MDOT: "Yes it is" possible freeways will continue to flood

(WXYZ) Southfield, MI - Its hard to forget those incredible images of flooded freeways from earlier this month. And the thousands of Metro Detroit drivers who suffered through it.

The problem repeated itself this past Tuesday, although on a far smaller scale. Leaving drivers to wonder--will the roads flood every time the sky opens up?

"Is it possible? Yes it is," says MDOT spokeswoman Diane Cross.

The agency points to two major problems:

Erosion and debris around the crumbling roads are clogging drains.

And more than half of freeway pump houses are in poor condition.

Both meaning--the water has nowhere to go.

"The problem is infrastructure," agrees road expert and Lawrence Tech professor Dr. Nabil Grace.

MDOT says they don't have the money to fix things.

Recently, the state Senate voted down tax hikes that could have meant $1 billion for repairs.

When asked what motorists can do; MDOT said:

"Contact their legislators and demand money to fix the roads," says Cross. "We are all affected by a system that currently puts band-aids on areas needing surgery."

MDOT says the drainage system on I-94, one of the roads recently flooded, is nearly 60 years old. Think about how many other freeways are of similar age. Its a flooding disaster waiting to happen, say experts.

As far as a solution, MDOT says, "Establish long-term funding to fix aging infrastructure and bring our roads up to current standards and then the funding to maintain the roads. Maintenance includes plowing, salting, potholes, freeway lighting, graffiti, guard rails, traffic signals and even cleaning out of catch basins which fill with debris; from litter, grass clippings, soil erosion, things washed down service drives onto the roads and clog the drains," says Cross.
 

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