Nov 19, 2013 7:30 PM by Akeam Ashford
As winter weather starts to make its way through parts of the country, a St. Mary Parish company mines 1,500 feet below ground to keep roads across America safe.
The North American salt mine in Cote Blance, has been in continuous operation since 1961, providing more than 3 million tons of salt to highway de-icing programs across the country.
Each year, the mine's employees and vendors contribute an estimated $25 million dollars to the area economy.
According to Vice President of Operations Don Brumm, the mine is the largest producer of Louisiana's salt.
"About 70 percent of our salt goes to highway de-icing product for governments and municipalities for roads. The last 30 percent of our salt goes to chemical customers," Brumm said.
As an important part of the community for more than 50 years, Brumm said there will be work for miners for another 30 to 40 years.
"We all realize very much so that the product we produce here, salt, is a very important safety product for people that live in the northern states," Brumm said.