Councilman calls for a hearing on salting Philly streets

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Could Philadelphia be using something better to melt snow and ice from the streets? One city councilman thinks yes. 

Councilman Jim Kenney wants hearings on why the Streets Department is sticking with traditional rock salt instead of other chemicals for melting winter’s worst. 

“Many of the folk in the city who own dogs are walking their dogs out and have to deal with this stuff on their paws licking it off their paws which could actually kill them,” Kenney said, referring to how traditional salts can burn animals’ paws, cause serious gastrointestinal problems and even cause internal burns.

Streets Commissioner Dave Perri says he’s willing to hear alternatives to salting the streets.

“I think there is other products that we can possibly use out there that would make the salt more effective in the lower temperature experiencing these days,” Perri said. “We had a couple of temperatures where the temperatures are in the low teens When the temperatures are that cold.”

During a recent cold spell, PennDOT was using more modern ice melters that worked even when the temperatures were not climbing out of the single digits.

A hearing date has not been set.

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