H/Posts and Highlights/#MySci411: Black Ice Creates Invisible Dangers on Region’s Roads

#MySci411: Black Ice Creates Invisible Dangers on Region’s Roads

When wintry weather strikes eastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey, drivers concern themselves with what is known commonly as black ice on the region’s roads.

Black ice, as it is called, is simply ice that forms with few or no air bubbles that form on roads, most of which are black. The lack of air bubbles and the milky-white color associated most often with ice, this ice is essentially invisible.

Scientists say black ice is caused often by the condensation of moisture from vehicle exhaust pipes. Bridges are known to be especially dangerous because their entire surfaces are exposed to weather conditions, making them freeze more quickly.

While black ice is extremely difficult to detect, one tip is for drivers to look for reflections on road surfaces in times of cold weather. That reflection often is the result of the presence of black ice.


Dennis Zehner, 484.664.1002, Ext. 112
 

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