Cars leave the roadway after pavement buckles on Highway 36


The rear end of an SUV is pitched into the air on Highway 36 June 11 as seen in footage from a Minnesota Department of Transportation traffic camera. Pavement buckled on the roadway due to the heat -- the roadway was fixed shortly after the buckle was reported. (courtesy of Minnesota Department of Transportation)

Soaring temperatures the evening of June 11 caused pavement on Highway 36 to buckle on the border of Maplewood and Little Canada at Edgerton Street.

Drivers reported the buckle in the westbound left lane of the highway to the Minnesota Department of Transportation just before 7 p.m., according to a MnDOT spokesman.

Traffic camera footage from that time shows cars leaving the roadway after driving over the ramp-like buckle, which coincided with a day-time high temperature in the area of 91 degrees Fahrenheit.

The MnDOT spokesman said the buckle, technically in Maplewood, was fixed shortly after it was reported.

A MnDOT press release from its Mankato office on another very warm day, June 10, told drivers to be alert to the possibility of "blow-ups." The release noted reports of such incidents on Interstate 90 and Highway 169 in the south central part of the state.

The release explained that roadways are cut into segments creating spaces between them to allow for expansion on hot days.

"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 release says. "The warmer the temperature, the more the pavement material expands."

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