When I was a young lad growing up in Ottawa, Canada in the early 1980's, I clearly remember that in the winter the city would spread a mixture of sand and salt on the roads...the salt was to melt the ice, and the sand was for traction. In more recent years in Ottawa, the city just spreads pure salt on the roads in bad weather to melt the ice and snow. When I 'looked into' it a bit, I'm pretty sure I found that the city did this because of the dirty mess a sand/salt mixture makes; salt dissolves away much easier. I'm not sure if that is correct, but I thought I read\heard that somewhere. A couple of months ago, my wife and I moved to a place called North Bay, 4 hours north-west of Ottawa. Being more north, and at a higher altitude, it is much colder here in the winter. When it snows/ices up here, the city spreads sand on the roads, with little or no salt. I've been told that is because with how cold it is here, salt is ineffective and a waste, and you just need sand for traction. It is weird to see sandy muck on the roads again, and it does make a mess. Another clear difference I have seen is the pattern of metal damage it does. Cars and trucks rust here, obviously, but what you see a lot more of is 'sandblast' damage behind the wheels from the grit being thrown at the paint, as opposed to just rust bubbles on fenders and doors. So, what does your jurisdiction use for winter clearing, and has it changed that you have seen? I think its interesting that our winters in Ottawa DID use to be a lot colder than now, and they used sand and salt...now that it is warmer they use just salt. I wonder if they really did analyze how much warmer the winters were getting and changed because of that, or was it because of mess?