Ice Clearing & Winter Tips

Pick the right tools for the weather. Snow and ice clearing tools include more than just salt. Before reaching for salt, ask yourself what ther tools (shovel. ice chopper, sand...) you have to deal with the weather conditions.

Without question, winter salt helps keep our roads, parking lots, and pathways clear of snow and ice. However, as populations, traffic, and infrastructure grow, so does our reliance on salt – which isn't necessarily a good thing.

It is possible to stay safe this winter and minimize the impact of salt on the environment.

boot tread

Get a Grip on Snow and Ice

While salt can make winter safer, it's only part of the answer. Do your part. Protect yourself from slips and falls.
  1. Wear sturdy footwear designed for snow and ice to help protect yourself from slips and falls. 
    Boots should have a good tread for traction with low, wide heels. Check out this handy guide (PDF) for buying proper winter footwear.
  2. Put snow tires on your car. Slow down on the road. Give yourself extra time to arrive at your destination. Drive for the conditions. And make sure you give plow drivers plenty of space to do their work.
  3. Use a traction aid like kitty litter or sand to reduce the potential to slip.
Download "Curb the Salt" poster (PDF)

Get Smart About Salt

To keep your driveway and sidewalk clear of snow and ice:

shoveling driveway

  1. Shovel first. When you remove snow and ice by shovelling, you’ll need less salt, and it can be more effective. Get out there as early as you can and keep up with storms. You may even decide that salt isn't needed.
  2. For icy patches:
    1. Use a traction aid like kitty litter or sand to reduce the potential to slip.
    2. Sprinkle de-icing material on icy areas only, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for working temperatures and application rates.
    3. Give de-icing material time to do its work.
  3. Use salt wisely. Too much salt can become a slip and fall hazard and is wasteful when there is no ice to be found.
  4. Sweep it up and save it for later. Sweep up excess and spilled salt and put back in its container to save for another time.
  5. Prevent future icy buildups:
    1. Redirect downspouts away from walkways and driveway.
    2. Shovel unsalted snow to lower areas or onto lawns to direct melting snow away from paved areas.
  6. If hiring a snow removal contractor to clear driveways or lots, use certified Smart about Salt Contractors. They’re trained in reducing salt use while maximizing effectiveness and safety.
Download "Get Smart About Salt" postcard (PDF)

Fun for Kids

Winter Fun Activity Sheet (PDF)

When not outside having fun in the snow, download this activity book full of winter fun! 


Pass it on

Ask your friends and family to join the challenge. Tell businesses and organizations about why it’s important everyone is smart about salt and encourage them to become a Smart About Salt Certified Site.

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Follow us on Facebook to keep up to date on tips and practices and to share information with your friends.

Get A Grip poster

Use the poster to encourage your employees, colleagues, customers and business/community partners to join the challenge to get a grip!

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