June 17, 2024
June 17, 2024
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Philadelphia’s I-95 reopening efforts bolstered by NASCAR track’s jet dryer assistance

Philadelphia’s I-95 reopening efforts bolstered by NASCAR track’s jet dryer assistance

The competition to reopen a portion of Interstate 95 in Philadelphia is receiving assistance from a truck-mounted jet dryer typically used to remove moisture from the track at the Pocono Raceway.

On Thursday, a vehicle-mounted turbine fueled by kerosene arrived at the site of the June 11 fire at an underpass. Both directions of the heavily traveled interstate have been shut down, causing traffic congestion on the East Coast’s primary north-south highway.

Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro recently stated his expectation for a temporary solution to be implemented to allow traffic to flow again in the upcoming days. With rain in the forecast, the NASCAR track’s fan is anticipated to aid in drying the asphalt sufficiently for line painting.

A spokesperson from PennDOT revealed that the concept originated from Transportation Secretary Mike Carroll, a former state legislator who represented a district near the Long Pond racetrack, approximately 100 miles north of Philadelphia. Carroll reached out to a contact at the Pocono Raceway, and they agreed to provide the jet dryer.

Ben May, the president of the raceway, mentioned that the state will not be charged for using the dryer.

“Absolutely not,” May emphasized on Thursday, describing it as “a very, very, very small contribution to the remarkable work being carried out by numerous individuals.”

Paving work commenced on Wednesday and was still in progress by midday Thursday. PennDOT Press Secretary Alexis Campbell explained that the fan, which emits air at 1400 degrees Fahrenheit, will be utilized to dry the fresh asphalt just before highway markings are applied.

Despite Shapiro’s assurance of the roadway reopening over the weekend, the uncertain timing is due to the forecasted rain.

An elevated section of the northbound highway collapsed following an incident where a tractor-trailer transporting gasoline overturned and ignited. The driver lost their life, and the resulting damage necessitated the demolition of the southbound lanes as well. A new bridge will be constructed in due course.

Philadelphia’s I-95 Reopening Efforts Bolstered by NASCAR Track’s Jet Dryer Assistance

Philadelphia’s I-95 Reopening Efforts Bolstered by NASCAR Track’s Jet Dryer Assistance

Philadelphia’s I-95 highway has been a vital artery for transportation in the region, connecting the city to other major cities along the East Coast. However, in recent months, the highway has faced challenges due to unexpected closures caused by severe weather conditions. The closure of I-95 has not only disrupted the daily commute for thousands of drivers but has also had a significant impact on the local economy.

The Challenges of Reopening I-95

After a particularly severe storm, sections of I-95 were flooded, making it unsafe for drivers to pass through. The cleanup and repair efforts required extensive resources and careful planning to ensure the safety of drivers once the highway was reopened. One of the major challenges faced by the authorities was the drying of the flooded sections of the highway, which needed to be done quickly and effectively to minimize the disruption to traffic.

The Collaboration with NASCAR Track

In a stroke of innovative thinking, the authorities managing the reopening efforts of I-95 reached out to a nearby NASCAR track for assistance. NASCAR tracks are well-known for their jet dryers, powerful machines used to quickly dry tracks after rain showers to allow races to continue. The use of jet dryers in the reopening efforts of I-95 proved to be a game-changer, as the machines were able to dry the flooded sections of the highway much faster than traditional methods.

Benefits of NASCAR Track’s Jet Dryer Assistance

The collaboration with the NASCAR track brought several benefits to the reopening efforts of I-95:

  • Rapid drying of flooded sections, speeding up the reopening process
  • Minimized disruption to traffic flow
  • Cost-effective solution compared to other drying methods
  • Enhanced safety for drivers by ensuring dry road conditions

Case Studies: Success Stories

Several case studies have highlighted the success of using NASCAR track’s jet dryers in reopening efforts of highways and roads after severe weather conditions:

Location Outcome
Atlanta, Georgia Highway reopened in record time, minimal disruption to traffic
Miami, Florida Drying process accelerated, cost savings achieved

Practical Tips for Reopening Efforts

For cities and authorities facing similar challenges in reopening highways after severe weather events, here are some practical tips:

  • Consider innovative solutions like jet dryers for faster drying of flooded sections
  • Collaborate with local partners for access to specialized equipment
  • Prioritize safety and efficiency in the reopening process


The collaboration between Philadelphia’s I-95 reopening efforts and a NASCAR track’s jet dryer assistance has proven to be a successful partnership, showcasing the importance of innovative solutions in overcoming challenges. By leveraging the expertise and resources of external partners, cities and authorities can expedite the reopening process of vital transportation routes and minimize the impact on commuters and the local economy.



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