I-Team: Cutting edge road repair - WNEM TV 5

I-Team: Cutting edge road repair

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

As the ground freezes and thaws it creates potholes that can damage vehicles.

Michigan roads are no match for Michigan weather and the old ways of road repair are not working.

The managing director of the Midland County Road Commission, Terry Palmer, was featured in Crossroads, Michigan's road repair magazine. He received statewide recognition for his innovative thinking.

"If you have a road that has a crack, the water gets in. It freezes then it pops a little bit of the asphalt up," Palmer said.

Palmer is among the first in the country to use a space age road paving fabric. He also uses something called fiberMat, which is a mixture of asphalt, cut fiberglass strands and chip stones.

The two types of protective layers are laid under the pavement, potentially doubling a road's life to as many as 15 years.

"Keeps the water from getting in and also it helps keep the cracks from the old pavement from coming back through," Palmer said.

The material makes it easier to build and is cheaper.

"It goes in faster. It costs less and it lasts just as long as a regular conventional bridge," Palmer said.

The new jointless bridge system allows for a smaller crew and minimal equipment.

"Really you're trying to save money, shorten construction and make things last longer," Palmer said.

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