CINCINNATI — Given the forecast for the next 48 hours, many Tri-Staters are running out to grab some driveway ice melter shovels, scrapers, and batteries, just in case the ice and snow storm turns out to be as bad as our forecast currently suggests.
So what should you have on hand, and can you still find any ice melter at this point?
A check of several Kroger, Walmart, and UDF stores around the Cincinnati area Wednesday morning found bags of ice melter all sold out.
Smaller hardware stores appeared to have better supplies, at least for the time being. Some Ace stores still had bags left, as did Woods Hardware in downtown Cincinnati Wednesday morning (but it could be gone by the time you read this).
At the McCabe Do-It Center in Madeira, bags of ice melter, shovels, and windshield de-icer were flying out the door.
Shopper S.J.Walker had a cart full of items to be ready for possible power outages.
"I got ice melt and a flashlight and a little lantern that charges your phones," she said.
Craig Lyjack went a step further, snapping up one of the store's last Honda generators.
"It is really just the amount of ice they are predicting," he said. "I'm worried about power outages."
Store Manager Andy Burrows --no relation to Joe Burrow, he told us -- says bags of ice melter are being grabbed of the shelves as fast as they can stock them.
But he hopes to get another shipment or two this week.
"I just got done looking in the computer, there is supposed to be more coming in," he said.
What you should have at home
Burrows says with a potentially dangerous ice storm coming, it's a good idea to have:
- Driveway salt
- A snow shovel
- A windshield ice scraper
- Blue windshield de-icer for your car
- A full tank of gas in your car
- Flashlights with working batteries
- A portable generator (though they are very hard to find right now)
At this point, it appears most Cincinnati-area Kroger and Walmart stores have been cleared out of ice melter. Kroger did not respond to our request for comment on whether more bags would be coming in.
One more option as of early Wednesday was Home Depot or Lowe's. Some stores were still reporting pallets of ice melt in stock.
Tip: Before heading to Lowe's or Home Depot, check their websites,which will tell you which stores have good supplies, and which are almost out.
If you can't find ice melt anywhere, try swimming pool supply shops, which have granular salt used in pool filters.
The problem this time of year, is that it is tough getting more salt and shovels in.... as suppliers are now focused on fertilizer and mulch for spring.
As always, don't waste your money.