As temps rise, so does the concrete

NEW MADRID COUNTY, MO (KFVS) - The hot summer heat is creating a danger for drivers.

"That pavement is stretched out as far as it can go, and eventually something has to give," said Matt Seiler, the Assistant District Engineer for MODOT.

Seiler said the continuous hot summer temperatures can cause problems for drivers.

"As that pavement expands, those joints start closing up, and once they all close, the pavement has nowhere to go but up and that causes a pavement blow up," said Seiler.

Highway 60 near Morehouse buckled Friday, causing one car to run off the road, and two others to crash.

Seiler said MODOT workers make a temporary fix for the problem road by making cuts in the concrete to relieve pressure, and then smoothing it out with asphalt.

"We'll go out immediately asses it, make some saw cut to kind of relieve that pressure, on that pavement, and then maybe hammer some of that hump out of the concrete, put some asphalt in there to smooth the ride a little bit fix it temporarily, then we'll come back and replace that section of pavement correctly, and saw out on both sides, remove that entire slab, and then re-pour," said Seiler.

Seiler said even the temporary fix is okay for your car to roll on through.

"It looks rough, and it will sound rough just because the tread of the tires are hitting irregular pavement, but it's smooth enough that it's not going to cause any trouble for a car," said Seiler.

Some say they wonder if the dry summer has made our roads more or less prone to buckle.

"Really not, it's strictly heat, the only thing is that if you have rain, it's generally cooler, or it tends to cool the pavement, so the chances of a blow up are less," said Seiler. "Being dry it's really just the heat, several weeks of 90, upper 90 degree days."

Seiler said so far this year, they've seen an average number of road blow-ups compared to years past. But he said they've proactively started creating wide joints in the road for the concrete to expand, to prevent future buckles.

Seiler said it's important for people to call MODOT if they see a buckle in the road. Seiler said they can't fix a problem if they don't know it's there.

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