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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky Transportation officials are looking for ways to conserve salt as supplies dwindle and the emergency reserve is nearly tapped out.
In a press release, KYTC officials say the state has less than 150,000 tons of salt on hand and engineers are trying to stretch the remaining supply.
Crews will now rely more on plowing and less on salt treatment when conditions permit.
On average, the state uses 200,000 to 250,000 tons of salt a year. This winter, the state has already used more than 300,000 tons of salt.
Salt shipments and new supplies are also hard to find since most of the country is also experiencing a harsh winter.
The state's largest emergency reserve of salt is inside Louisville's Mega Cavern.
At the beginning of this winter, KYTC had 60,000 tons of salt in the Mega Cavern, but as of Friday the reserve has fallen to 26,000 tons. The Highway Department has also requested 18,000 of those remaining reserve funds.
KYTC officials say the state highway system is its top priority, and will therefore be unable to provide local governments with additional salt.