This Minnesota Department of Transportation photo shows the buckle in Rock County near the South Dakota border.

Hot weather causes pavement of 'blow up'

Transportation officials urge motorists to expect the unexpected

Motorists should be alert to the impact hot weather is having on some area highways.

"Blowups" of concrete pavement can be very dangerous for motorists. Maintenance crews are keeping busy repairing the broken pavement, especially on portions of Interstate 90. 

Other highways prone to buckling are Highway 15, Highway 60, and Highway 169 in south central Minnesota.

When a road is constructed, it is cut into segments creating a space for expansion and contraction. 

Sometimes that space is not enough and the pavement buckles or blows up, particularly when the pavement is older and weaker.

The warmer the temperature, the more the pavement material expands.

Blacktop (bituminous) pavement is a more flexible material and does not usually blow up but may create a bump similar to a frost heave, especially in areas where concrete and blacktop meet.

Officials from the Minnesota Department of Transportation are asking motorists to drive with caution and slow down as there is no way to tell where or when a blowup will happen. 

The public can call the Mankato office at 1-800-657-3747 if they see severely broken concrete on state and federal highways.

Motorists are also advised to slow down and drive with caution through work zones this construction season. 

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