‘Everywhere by us is out:’ Sidewalk salt in short supply as another winter storm moves in

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WAUKESHA -- Milk and bread often fly off the grocery store shelves when winter storms approach, but sidewalk salt was another hot item Monday, Feb. 11, with more snow moving into southeast Wisconsin. Some store leaders were having difficulty restocking their supply fast enough.

FOX6 News made several calls Monday, trying to track down stores with salt in stock. We ended up with a narrow list that brought us to Waukesha, with as much as 11 inches of snow in the forecast.

"My wife's told me everywhere by us is out," said Corey Stillman of Johnson Creek. "I heard from a co-worker it was here, so I dropped everything I was doing to come here and get salt."

Jill Weber said she had been on the hunt for a large bag of salt for days.

"We went to four different stores and couldn't find any," said Weber.

The timing of the shortage couldn't have been worse, with a winter storm warning and winter weather advisory taking effect through early Wednesday, Feb. 13. This, after multiple rounds of snow, bitterly cold temperatures, freezing rain and rain.

"I think the rainstorm really caught everyone off guard. Everyone's driveway is kind of like an ice rink," said

Don Dishno, manager at Tomchek Ace Hardware on Sunset Drive in Waukesha said they were working hard to keep their shelves stocked.

"We have three semi trucks coming in. The first one came probably about an hour ago, and within the first hour of it arriving, 18 pallets were already sold and gone," said Dishno.

He predicted the possibility they would be sold out by close Monday -- a lot of salt at 59 bags per pallet, each about 50 pounds.

"To see them go that quick is almost unheard of," said Dishno.

"This weather is ridiculous," said Weber.

"Every Wisconsin winter seems interesting, but this one seems just tough," said Stillman.

FOX6's partners at WMTV in Madison said in Dane County, major stores like Menards and Home Depot were out of salt, with other small businesses limiting it to one bag per customer.

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