Buckling Pavement Forces Lane Closures On I-94, 3 Days After Flooding
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DETROIT (WWJ) – Record breaking flooding in metro Detroit on Monday is still taking its toll on one local freeway.
Several motorists driving eastbound on I-94 underneath Warren Avenue in Detroit called the WWJ Newsroom Thursday morning to report a troubling problem — the pavement was buckling.
Thursday afternoon road crews were working to get that road repaired, leaving only the left lane open to traffic.
Diane Cross, a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Transportation, said the problem arose after severe flooding on the freeway.
“We’ve got some rough pavement,” Cross told WWJ’s Laura Bonnell. “In the two right lanes [of I-94], we’ve got some buckling of the concrete, which means it’s a little bit like a speed bump.”
MDOT chose to wait until after the morning rush to fix the pavement. Cross talked about what crews are working on.
“What’s going to happen is we are going to do the pavement repair, but we’re also going to be doing some testing of the soil in that area; and then depending on what that turns out to be will tell us whether or not we’re going to have to do any further work,” she said.
Cross says they need to be sure the soil underneath is strong after all the rain and flooding. If all turns out well with that test — they expect to have the lanes back open by 10 p.m. Thursday.
Cross urges motorists traveling that freeway to use extreme caution.
“You’re going to have some bouncing and maybe jumping around a little bit, so just be cautious. Obviously, the slower the better,” she said.
Monday’s downpour left five major freeways under several feet of water, including portions of I-94. The roads were closed for two days while crews cleaned up the mess and assessed the damage.
MDOT says the flooded freeway cleanup will cost around half-a-million dollars. Read more.
The National Weather Service said 4.57 inches of rain fell at Detroit Metro Airport, breaking the previous record of 2.06 inches set back in 1964. It’s the second-highest one-day rainfall on record for Detroit, behind 4.74 inches that fell on July 31, 1925.