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As road salt prices climb, county transportation department look to water-salt mix to conserve saltSubmitted: 11/28/2018
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com

As road salt prices climb, county transportation department look to water-salt mix to conserve salt
RHINELANDER - The Wisconsin DOT and county highway departments spend almost $100 million on road salt every winter.

When the cost of salt goes up, they feel it.

Road salt costs rose 8.7 percent this year.

That's pushed the DOT to help counties find ways to conserve salt. The DOT is training highway departments to properly mix and spread salt and water, which can cut salt usage by half.

"It targets where that salt stays. It stays in the travel lane where the cars are and where we want to remove the snow and the hard pack from the roads," Wisconsin DOT engineer Nick Vos said. "[With] rock salt, there's a loss factor from traffic. It just naturally blows off the road."


The DOT is hoping for a mild winter. More snow and ice means higher road maintenance costs.

"The more money we spend on winter between January and March is less work we can do in the summertime and the fall, because that money has been eaten up," Vos said.

Vilas Co. comes in with the highest costs in the state, paying more than $90 per ton.

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 IN OTHER NEWS

VILLAGE OF HEWITT - Monday around 7 A.M. Wood County police responded to a man who was run over by a dump truck in the Village of Hewitt.

When the police arrived they were informed by emergency responders that the man's injuries were fatal.

The victim of the accident was 77-years-old.

Police have ruled the death as an accident, and it was determined that the subjects involved were performing maintenance on the dump truck when the accident happened.

The Wood County Sheriff's Department, Hewitt EMS, Marshfield Ambulance, and the Wood County Coroner's Office all responded to the accident.

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CRANDON - Recently, flooding closed roads and frustrated communities from Rhinelander to Plover. A bad combination of rain and melting snow led to days of flood warnings. As those warnings go away, a related risk could do a lot more than frustrate you - it could make you sick. Flooding can cause contamination in wells, but the Northwoods is lucky to have a world-class water testing facility.

RT Krueger's Northern Lake Service in Crandon has about 50 specialized machines that test drinking water for half of the municipalities in Wisconsin. Krueger tests Rhinelander's water three times a week. Every year 65,000 water samples flow in and out of this lab.

"The safe drinking water testing for the city of Madison is being performed up in little tiny Crandon," said Krueger.

Many people have their own wells, which are not tested regularly like municipal water. If your well is submerged due to flooding, filtered groundwater mixes with potentially harmful surface water.

"You're introducing the bacteria and all the compounds and organisms that are normally above the water that you're drawing," said Krueger.

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RHINELANDER - A Rhinelander man could face prison time after police arrested him in an online underage sex sting.  Oneida County prosecutors charged Adam Van Roy with three felonies on Monday.

A Wisconsin Department of Justice Special Agent working with the Oneida County Sheriff's Office posed as a 19-year-old woman named 'Julia G' on several social media applications March 13-15.  Van Roy, 36, started talking with 'Julia' during that time.  

'Julia' soon told Van Roy she was actually only 15 years old.

The agent's notes show Van Roy asked 'Julia' for pictures, including nude images, and asked her "what do you like in the bedroom?"

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CRANDON -
(Suspects identified clockwise, beginning with upper-left: Robert Daniels, Andrew Phillips, Richard Harris, Geraldine Dubray, Allyssa Wamego, Tammy Mann)

A report of a noisy house party and fight near Crandon led to six drug-related arrests earlier this month.  Officers eventually found heroin, cocaine, and guns along with other drug items inside, but getting there took some extra work.

According to a release from the Forest County Sheriff's Office, police responded to a home at 7840 Love Knot Lane in the Town of Lincoln, which is east of Crandon, on March 7 around 7:15 p.m.

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MILWAUKEE - Officials say a man shot by University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee police on campus is hospitalized in stable condition.

University Police Chief Joe LeMire said at a news conference Tuesday two officers found the man, armed with a gun, sleeping on a bench in the Fine Arts Complex building around 7 a.m., an altercation occurred and he was shot. The police officers were treated for minor injuries.

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What We're Working OnSubmitted: 03/19/2019

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:


We talk to a snowplow driver in Lincoln County who says he was attacked with a baseball bat after accidently knocking down a mailbox.

We'll take you to the ribbon cutting for a new utility garage in Stevens Point and show you some sustainable design features that are part of the facility including the largest solar array in Central Wisconsin.

And we'll speak with a water testing specialist in Crandon to go over the importance of testing groundwater especially after there has been flooding in the area.


We'll bring you this and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

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PLOVER - Firefighters tried to go inside a burning church in Plover twice on Monday, but were forced out by fire both times.

Metro fire crews from Plover, Stevens Point , and the town of Hull were called in to The Springs United Methodist Church on Plover Springs Drive around 10:30 a.m.  Deputy Fire Chief Ken Voss said no one was inside at the time, but a passerby called in the fire.

The Point/Plover Metro Wire sent Newswatch 12 video, pictures, and information on the fire.

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