Snowfighter Handbook

Snowfighter Handbook


The Safe and Sustainable Snowfighting Handbook takes winter maintenance to a new level. It is a tool that can be used to provide excellent customer service, while protecting the environment.

The modern snowfighter must be accountable for meeting the community’s needs for safety and mobility, as well as the safeguarding of our environment.

We commend all those agencies practicing the Safe and Sustainable Snowfighting approach to snow and ice control, which emphasizes getting the most from every application of deicing salt while maintaining the safest roads possible in the most economical way, and protecting the environment.

Every winter, over 115,000 people are injured and over 1,000 are killed on snowy or icy American roads. Clear roads protect lives and commerce and salt is a necessary strategic resource.

• Road salting and effective plowing can reduce injury crashes by up to 88%.

• The economic impact of snow-related closures far exceeds the cost of timely snow removal. A one day major snowstorm that shuts down roads can cost a state between $300 and $700 million in indirect costs.

• Deicing pays for itself within the first 25 minutes after salt is applied.

Modern strategies to effectively deal with winter road hazards depend upon having the most up-to-date information of expected weather conditions, the timely deployment of anti-icing to prevent ice-pavement bonding, properly calibrated application of road salt, improved equipment, automatic spreader controls, sufficient covered storage, and stockpile logistics to make salting of roads the most effective and safest customer-driven method for snow and ice control.

Environmental problems concerning use and storage of salt need not exist if there is a balanced approach to the use of salt for snow and ice control — one that demonstrates excellent practices in achieving safety, mobility and care for the environment.

The Snowfighter’s Handbook was originally published in 1967. It has been widely accepted as a recommendation for proper salting procedures and techniques.

Download: Safe and Sustainable Snowfighting (PDF, 1.93 MB)


This handbook is an excellent source for information about the need for salt storage, how to make a practical plan and creating a structure and a program.


Partnering with leaders in winter maintenance, “SI takes maintenance to a new level. It is much more than an award; it is a tool we can use to provide excellent customer service, while protecting the environment.”

To apply for the “Safe and Sustainable Snowfighting Award” the facility manager should download and complete the SASS Award Application have it signed by his/her immediate supervisor and return it and all supporting documentation to the Salt Institute by July 1. Please answer all questions. Applications will be judged by our evaluation committee and in some cases a Salt Institute representative will make an on-site visit.