Thursday's extreme heat forced a Boone County MoDOT crew to cut their day short.
Hot temperatures had repair crews packing up their equipment before the afternoon sun made working conditions unbearable.
Their job is laying hot asphalt on a 2-lane highway under the hot, blistering sun. Theyâ??re filling pot holes on Route UU near the Interstate 70 Midway exit to prepare for an upcoming chip and seal operation next month. MoDOT crews worked throughout the morning until about 1:00 p.m. They quit early because of dangerous hot temperatures.
Crew Leader Kent Cunningham said, â??Itâ??s different. We donâ??t do it year round. We have snow during snow season. This will last, maybe, two or three months out of the year. We donâ??t do this all of the time.â??
They only do it when conditions are safe to avoid dehydration and possibly heat stroke. For some, air temperature is not the only problem with the heat. The fresh asphalt is more than 300 degrees. Workers said thereâ??s no escaping the heat under their feet. Cold water poured on the hot surface sounds like a frying egg.
Crew Leader Keegan Sievers said, â??Asphalt comes out at 300. If you are standing on that at 300 with an air temperature of 100 or 95, itâ??s pretty hot.â??
MoDOT crews make sure they have plenty of fluids on hand during the day. They drink extra water the night before a job.
MoDOT officials also provide sunscreen to all of their highway crew employees.