Fredericton — The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure has released its new winter maintenance plan. A key change is a pilot program to replace road salt with glyphosate.
“Although primarily used by the forestry sector, glyphosate has shown potential to melt snow and ice on roadways as effectively as traditional road salt,” stated Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Jeff Carr.
“Glyphosate has been used for many years and New Brunswickers are familiar and comfortable with the product,” he added.
The Department stated that glyphosate will also help control vegetation next to roadways, which is no longer being cut. The application of glyphosate in the winter will also enhance motorists’ safety in the summer season.
The main difference between road salt and glyphosate that motorists will notice is the smell. “Motorists can mitigate the horrible stench by turning on the air recirculation button in their vehicles,” said Carr.
Another benefit compared to salt is that glyphosate may act as a rust inhibitor, which will allow motorists to keep their vehicles for much longer.
To inform motorists of glyphosate application on roadways, Carr said the product will be dyed orange and special orange-painted plow trucks will be used.
“This change will also save the province money as the Department has entered into an agreement with J.D. Irving, Ltd. to purchase bulk amounts of glyphosate at a greatly reduced cost.”
Photo by Michael Pereckas used under Creative Commons license