MoDOT warns warm weather can cause pavement to blow up

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JEFFERSON CITY - Temperatures reached the low 90s Monday, placing extra stress on roads in mid-Missouri. 

MoDOT warned drivers that the warm weather can cause sections of the road to buckle and crack. 

MoDOT Central District Maintenance Engineer Jason Shafer said with high temperatures concrete expands, and if the expansion joints aren't wide enough or debris creates added pressure, the concrete becomes weak and is in danger of buckling and cracking. 

Shafer said MoDOT can't plan ahead for blown up roads, and it relied on the public to alert it to roads that have buckled and cracked. 

"We simply don't know where the blow ups are going to happen at, you simply don't know where they're going to be, so we do depend upon the traveling public, as well as our own forces as they're out and about anyway, but if a person does see anything we would encourage them to call," Shafer said.

Columbia Public Works Engineering Manager Richard Stone agreed that it's impossible to prepare for roads buckling and cracking because it can happen anywhere in the city. 

Drivers should look out for bumps in the road that recently popped up.

"If you have a bump that has not existed there before, that's gonna be, probably be your blow up," Shafer said. 

He added that the bump can range in size from small to fairly sizable. 

Shafer said although there's no specific temperature that causes the pavement to buckle, it is more likely to happen when temperatures reach the 90s.

"Whenever it gets above 90 for several days straight, just the frequency of us seeing them does increase quite a bit. I mean it's not unheard of them to happen when the temperature is in the 80s, it's just more prevalent when the temperature is in low to mid 90s," Shafer said. 

 

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