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Snow blower shortage in the KC metro

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KANSAS CITY, Ks. --  There's the old school way of clearing snow with the good old snow shovel.

But when many home improvement and hardware stores have sold out of shovels and when you're expecting likely more than a foot of snow on top of a previous heavy snow storm -- a snow blower might be the way to go.

The problem for Strasser Hardware is they don't have any, according to the store's floor manager Terry Burks.

"Blowers?  We've sold out of those," Burks said.  "We special ordered about 50 coming in tomorrow.  Supposedly they're all spoken for.  We'll just have to wait and see how that goes."

It seems to be the same song other stores are singing.  Home Depot?  Sold out.  Lowe's? You won't find one there.  Even the smaller chains like Westlake Ace Hardware, don't have any snow blowers.

Westlake employees said they've received numerous telephone calls from people asking where they could get a snow blower.  Strasser employees have also been fielding the same calls.

"Snow blowers, I stopped counting. I couldn't keep up with it, probably 200 or so," Burks told FOX4 News.

What is surprising to some store workers, even the more expensive snow blowers are gone.  Employees said they are priced from $200 to $900 for the gasoline-powered blowers.

Burks said his suggestion would be to purchase some ice melt.

"The way it's thawing out and melting out there, and then freezing up at night, people need the ice melt for their sidewalks and driveways.  We have plenty of that," he explained.

Burks said they're selling ice melt from $7 to about $20 depending on what kind you get, but he said it's worth it if that's all you have.

Several of the store employees FOX 4 News spoke to said they will be getting more shovels and snow blowers sometime Monday.  But some stores already have all their blowers reserved.  Call ahead to check on their availability.

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