Will It Be Hot Enough To Buckle Some Of Minnesota’s Roads Today?
The answer is maybe. MnDOT on Friday warned Minnesota drivers about the possibility of buckling pavement, but with temperatures predicted to reach dangerous levels today, the threat of road buckling may come up again.
Believe it or not, it's not just a temperature thing that will cause the pavement to buckle, it's a combination of things that happen that cause pavement to pop, or buckle under extreme conditions.
Driver alert: extreme heat could cause pavement buckles across the state. If you see buckling on your route, try to avoid driving over it and call 911 to report it. Pavement buckles are emergencies and we fix them ASAP. - MnDOT
According to the MnDOT website:
Pavement buckles can occur when the air temperature changes from moderate to extreme heat. When a road is constructed it is cut into segments creating a space for expansion and contraction. Sometimes that space is not enough and when that happens the pavement buckles or blows up, particularly when the pavement is older and weaker. The warmer the temperature the more the pavement material expands. The sun heats the pavement, and the pavement expands and then buckles. Buckles more commonly occur on older concrete pavements.
The humidity adds an extra layer to the process that causes road issues. According to pavementservicecorp.com: ..."Humidity will allow air gaps to form [in asphalt], which leads to crack[s]. Once a crack has begun, any water that enters begins to break down the binder cohesion, also causing potholes and traveling."
Hopefully your travels today don't lead you to any buckled roadways, and you are able to stay cool all afternoon. But if you do run into a situation, you now know what to do, and what causes the buckling issue with area roads.