Extreme Heat Affecting Road Paving in Oklahoma

July 27, 2022

Be patient with road construction crews working in this heat. That’s the message the Oklahoma Department of Transportation is giving drivers this summer, according to KJRH-TV in Oklahoma.

With the temperature there soaring into the triple digits, crews are required to take frequent breaks as they pave a stretch of Highway 28 in Rogers County. Asphalt takes time to cool since it is laid at 300 degrees or higher, but the extreme heat is causing that process to take even longer.

Paving crews can’t reopen the road until the surface cools below 160 degrees. Workers are alternating shifts to speed up the process, according to Jason Whitworth, Rogers County Supervisor for OKDOT.

Whitworth told KJRH-TV that the crew starts “earlier and then, of course, [we] shut down a little earlier laying the asphalt. That way we can open up traffic, and hopefully, by the time everyone starts heading home, we can open it up and let everybody through.”

Whitworth told the local TV station that he hopes drivers will be patient, since the crew has no control over how long a project can take.