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ODOT Shops for Emergency Supply of Extra Salt

COLUMBUS (Chris Vanocur/Kate Liebers) -- Ohio officials could order hundreds of thousands of tons of additional salt in anticipation of the next big storm in the forecast. 

The Ohio Department of Transportation said it may order as much as an additional 210,000 tons of salt to share with cities and towns with diminishing supplies.

"It is unprecedented for Ohio," ODOT director Jerry Wray said. He said the state usually stocks about 600,000 tons of salt; this year, it is approaching 1 million tons.

The extra supply could cost more than usual.

"As the demand goes up, supply is limited," he said. "I think we're going to be seeing higher prices and we will have to deal with that as best we can. It is not an option for us not to take care of the roads."

The salt will be dumped in seven strategic locations around the state so that hard-hit cities, towns and villages can replenish their own supplies.

But, as Wray pointed out, they will have to share.

"We have to be careful that we don't allow one jurisdiction to take what might be more than their share and shut some jurisdictions out," he said.

ODOT officials said they hope the new order will be enough to at least last the next few weeks.
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