Benefits of Dust Control in the Midwest with Northern Salt Inc.

Dust control in Minnesota and in the Midwest is often underestimated. the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency stresses the importance of what they call the “rule of one” in their handbook.

One car making one pass on one mile of dirt or gravel road one time each day for one year creates one ton of dust.”

With heavy traffic on gravel roads, in addition to places with activity such as campgrounds and RV parks, recreation areas, construction job sites, fairgrounds, and athletic fields, daily traffic and use can produce an average of 100 tons of dust, per mile, per year.

Northern Salt uses state-of-the-art dust control GPS tracking system with float monitoring technology provides our customers with accurate product application rate and printed meter reading report of gallons down during your dust control service. We take pride in our owned and operated equipment when providing high quality, accurate, and environmentally friendly dust control solutions to those we serve. The cost of little or no dust control far can far exceed the cost of investing in your gravel surfaces, Northern Salt is here to help with all your dust suppressant needs.

Dust control is critical in the spring and summer seasons to treat unpaved roads to keep dust down. High levels of dust contribute to particle pollution causing health issues for homeowners, workers, and recreation users that operate and live on unpaved roads that are prone to high levels of dust. As traffic runs across gravel roads and parking lots, gravel roads deteriorate as the small particles of dust leave the surface and make their way into the air. Daily traffic is not the only thing that deteriorate gravel surfaces causing dusty roads. Natural phenomenon’s such as strong winds and heavy rains can also cause gravel surfaces to wear way. During major and minor dust storm and weather events, large amounts of soil and dust become suspended in the air that become a safety hazard for those in the surrounding area. Not only is dust control needed on unpaved roads also n

There are numerous benefits to keeping dust down in your community. To combat the ever-changing traffic and weather conditions for gravel in Minnesota, Northern Salt Inc. We utilize both calcium chloride and magnesium chloride as products of choice. Both products work to attract moisture from the air to suppress dust on gravel surfaces with the goal of keeping dust particles on the ground and not in the air. This allows us to meet all your project needs and requirements. Both dust control products utilized by Northern Salt are hygroscopic, meaning that they attract moisture from the atmosphere and are resistant to evaporation and work to retain moisture in the road surfaces allowing for dust to be diminished and increasing stability.

The state of Minnesota has numerous local agencies that provide dust control resources to educate the community and companies toward proper dust control practices. The University of Minnesota has publication resources listed on their website such as Gravel Road ManagementOptimal RAP Content for Minnesota Gravel RoadsGravel Roads Construction and Maintenance GuideGravel Road Management Tools, and many more.

The Local Road Research Board of Minnesota (LRRB) recently completed a study to examine Best Practices for Dust Control on Gravel Roads and found that of the estimated 4 million miles of U.S roads, almost half are unpaved. The goal of their study was to evaluate the effectiveness of various dust control products that are commonly found in Minnesota.

Three dust control products were evaluated: calcium chloride, magnesium chloride and an organic polymer-plus-binder. All three dust methods to keep dust down were sprayed evenly onto the road via a dust control tank truck. Dust levels were monitored throughout the year and reevaluated in the second year. At the end of the study, it was determined that Magnesium chloride treatments were found to be as effective as calcium chloride. Both Magnesium chloride and calcium chloride were more effective than the organic polymer with binder.

The practices determined most effective, magnesium chloride and calcium chloride, by the LRRB are both methods that Northern Salt Incorporated implements in Spring and Summer dust control methods.

Benefits of Dust Control:

  • Better road condition
  • Lower road maintenance cost over time
  • Improved air quality
  • Reduced vehicle damage
  • Reduced equipment wear
  • Reduced site management and cleaning costs
  • Increases safety for drivers, pedestrians, and workers
  • Improved visibility  Types of stabilizers utilized by Northern Salt Inc.:
  • Calcium Chloride
  • Magnesium Chloride Other of stabilizers on the dust control market:
  • Resins
  • Natural Clays
  • Soybean Oil
  • Water Factors that impact dust control performance:
  • Humidity
  • Heavy Rainfall & Severe Weather
  • Heavy Traffic
  • Base Soil Type Health problems associated with high levels of dust:
  • Asthma
  • Bronchitis
  • Allergic Reactions
  • Heart Disease
  • Lung Irritation Northern Salt looks forward to working with you to provide a dust control plan that fits your unique situation and needs to benefit those in your community and work place that are affected by high levels of dust and the health concerns that accompany dust.  Please email us at or give us call at 651.334.6814 for inquiries or questions. We look forward to hearing from you!