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Optimization of Salt Storage for County Garage Facilities

Started: September, 2013 Ended: January, 2014 Project ID #4W4679 Status: Completed


The objective of this project will be to conduct an analysis of the salt dome facilities utilized by ODOT to store road salt for winter maintenance operations, in order to identify practices and onsite modifications that can improve salt loading and storage at ODOT salt domes and enhance worker safety.


As of 2007, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) stored approximately 400,000 tons of deicing salt at 222 locations statewide. Typical annual tons of salt used range from 300,000 to 550,000. ODOT uses various structures to store salt, such as barns, coverall buildings, and salt domes. Proper salt storage is a best management practice that protects the invested money in the product, as well as equipment, infrastructure, personnel and the environment.   At its salt dome facilities, ODOT has identified two main issues: 1) an inability to store the maximum amount of salt that the salt dome allows and 2) precipitation from the outside affecting the contents of the building. To realize greater efficiency at salt dome facilities, identifying the state of the practice for salt loading and storage by other State DOTs and equipment necessary to accomplish these tasks is needed. Additionally, identifying methods to close off salt domes from the elements is needed to preserve the investment in the materials, infrastructure and prevent unneeded costs for repair and clean-up. Consequently, research is required to evaluate salt domes, and identify the state of the practice for salt loading and storage, identify available options and useful equipment, perform a cost-benefit analysis, and provide recommendations based on the identified options.   This analysis will serve as Phase 1 of this research project, with Phase 2 analyzing the success of the implemented strategies.


Sponsors & Partners

  • Ohio University Sponsor

Part of: Winter Maintenance and Effects, Cold Climate Operations & Systems

Project Tagged In: winter maintenance, snow and ice control

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