March 19, 2013
LIMA — Local and state officials say the temperatures and snowfall were closer to averages this winter than they were last year, but it’s still been a mild winter overall.
The Allen County Engineer’s Office will be storing roughly 1,000 tons of salt this year if we don’t have more winter weather this season. That’s down from approximately 1,500 tons the county kept in storage at the end of last winter. They contract about 3,500 tons of salt each year, and they’ve used about 1,800 tons through the winter.
“It was a little more than last year, but still, a pretty mild winter than what we’re used to,” said Dan Hanjora, roads maintenance superintendent for the Engineer’s Office.
The Ohio Department of Transportation and some local municipalities like American and Shawnee townships also salt the roads during inclement weather. ODOT Highway Management Administrator Rod Nuveman said 32,945 tons of salt was used in the eight-county area this winter, while under 20,000 tons was used last winter.
“This would be a traditional or typical winter for us, in just about every respect,” Nuveman said. “This time of year, we’re focusing on pothole repair. We’re also getting some crack sealing done.”
The ODOT District 1 region includes Allen, Putnam, Van Wert, Hardin, Hancock, Wyandott, Paulding and Defiance counties.
According to the National Weather Service Northern Indiana office, temperatures were still above normal averages during the winter months, which they designate being from Dec. 1 to Feb. 28.
“Generally, the average temperature was a little bit above normal, particularly because of warmer weather in December and January,” said Nick Greenawalt, a National Weather Service meteorologist.
March, however, has had below-average temperatures and above-average snowfall. He said this March and last March are different in just about every aspect.
“For March so far, we’re actually below normal for temperature and above normal in snow,” he said. “Last March was incredibly warm, sometimes in the 70s and 80s. … That’s really where the differences are between this year and last year.”
Greenawalt said the next few weeks will likely remain below normal springtime temperatures, which have averages in the upper 40s and lower 50s. However, for the entirety of the spring season, March through May, temperatures are expected to be above average.