By David Madden

CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) — South Jersey is preparing as well as it can for whatever Mother Nature has in store, with a nor’easter on the way.

Salt is in short supply up and down the eastern seaboard.  Many municipalities are at critically low levels.  Blame the constant bombardment of storm after storm.

In Camden County, freeholder Ian Leonard says they have salt-sharing agreements with several towns in return for taking care of some county roads.

“When we need to activate that agreement, they get the salt.  Unfortunately, we can’t activate it because we’re critically low on salt,” he notes.

So, towns are pretty much on their own.   Priorities will go to major snow emergency roads.

But don’t be surprised if secondary and side roads don’t get salted immediately.  Leonard’s advice is that once the storm really gets going, stay inside until it’s over.

And be patient. It may take a while before those salt and plow trucks get to you.

In Gloucester County, where most towns also get their salt from the county, freeholder Heather Simmons says they have 1,700 tons available — barely enough to deal with the county’s needs.

“We normally use about a thousand to 1,200 tons of salt per snow event,” she tells KYW Newsradio, “sometimes less than that.  But the last two storms we used 2,000 tons for each.”

She says that residents  can help street crews by staying at home during the height of the storm.  If you’re not on the street, those crews can do a far more effective job of clearing them.

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