A section of city sidewalk along Auto Road SE is marked by the city after having buckled in the extreme heat on Tuesday, June 29, 2021. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

A section of city sidewalk along Auto Road SE is marked by the city after having buckled in the extreme heat on Tuesday, June 29, 2021. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Salmon Arm city sidewalk buckles in extreme heat

City staff say concrete has expanded beyond expansion joints

A heat wave that has pushed temperatures over 40 C in Salmon Arm and much of B.C. has also pushed up a section of city sidewalk.

Pylons, a warning sign and orange paint mark a section of buckling sidewalk located in front of an Auto Road SE property, west of the 2oth Street SE intersection.

Rob Niewenhuizen, city director of engineering and public works, said concrete routinely expands and contracts as temperature changes. However, with the excessive heat the city is currently experiencing, Niewenhuizen said concrete can sometimes expand and exceed the expansion joints designed to absorb the movement.

“This pressure then lifts the concrete panels, resulting in a heaved or buckled section…,” said Niewenhuizen.

Asked how the heat could affect roads, Niewenhuizen said the hot temperatures do put stress on asphalt road surfaces and there is a chance issues could arise in higher traffic areas.

“We have to keep in mind that new road asphalt is placed at a very high temperature, so I do not expect too many issues,” he added.

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lachlan@saobserver.net
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