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DOT: Drivers should be aware of risk of pavement buckling

Updated: Jun. 10, 2021 at 3:33 PM CDT
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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - The heat wave can mean danger on the roads as the extreme temperatures cause the pavement to buckle.

In western Wisconsin part of I-94 was shut down Tuesday and a section of the pavement buckled on Clairemont Avenue on Saturday.

“As the temperature increases concrete wants to expand. What ends up happening is it eventually runs out of room to expand, it will run into another section of concrete, find a weak spot and it will start pushing up on the pavement which causes the buckle,” explained Devin Harings, Northwest Region Pavement Engineer at DOT.

So far this year, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation has reported 115 incidents of pavement buckling on state highways. That compares to 163 in 2020 and 105 in 2019.

“If you think about our climate we have some extreme hot in the summer and some extreme cold in the winter so it puts a lot of stress on our pavements,” Harings said.

The DOT warns people should use extra caution on the road, keep extra space to stop and call 911 if they notice the pavement buckling.

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