BUILD? NO - REFORMS
ANATOLY KARPENKOV, IGOR MORGARETTO
The thesis that “highways are the country's transport arteries” has been known to everyone since childhood. Indeed, they are judged by the branching, capacity and quality of roads about the economic development of the state - its “economic health”. Only now, judging by how often each of us at the wheel mentions the numerous potholes of domestic roads with an unkind word, "the patient is more likely sick than healthy." This is despite the fact that our roads are constantly being repaired!
The so-called "patching" repair is carried out in the country, it can be said year-round, and with the onset of the summer season, heavy machinery enters the road to replace the old asphalt concrete pavement with a new one. But a year or two has passed - and it becomes worthless, requiring a new overhaul or a complete replacement. According to statistics, the cost of repairing roads in our country is almost 3/4 of all funds allocated for road needs, so almost nothing remains for the construction of new ones. Why do our roads live so little?
MYSTERY KNOWN TO ALL
Needless to say, we were not lucky with the climate: Russia is a northern country (Sochi does not count) and 86% of all the soils we have are so-called bonded (clay and loam). And they, as is known to specialists, collect moisture well and then reluctantly give it away. In this case, temperature differences on the surface of the earth during the year can reach 80 ° C! The soil gained moisture, and then the frosts hit - the asphalt cracked. In the spring, as soon as the topsoil thawed, it “swam”.
But it’s not just the climate. In Russia, the standard for the density of the embankment on which asphalt is laid has not changed … since 1939. Can you imagine how the capacity of cars has changed over the years, and speeds have increased? Could 65 years ago have known that on the roads with a speed of more than 100 km / h the road trains weighing several tens of tons will go? We have the vast majority of roads designed for a load … not more than 6 tons per axle …
Neither our climate, nor the composition of the soil we can change. Another thing is the method of laying asphalt. Any student probably knows that the hot asphalt mixture is laid on pre-compacted layers of gravel and sand. And the strength of the road surface directly depends on the density of the soil. The current standard (by the way, it is 2.5 times lower in our country than in Europe and the USA) can be thoroughly changed.
Attempts to increase the density in recent years have been undertaken more than once. They tried to use special foreign equipment, but it turned out to be complicated, bulky, very expensive and not too adapted to Russian conditions. It’s too tough for our clay! Meanwhile, 10 years ago a unique machine was created in Russia, in which vibration was not used to compact the soil, but vibration. In one pass, she “clogged” clay by 7%, and this is enough to increase the strength of the road 2.5 times!
As usual, the experience was recognized as extremely successful - all the important bosses put their visas under all the important documents … that was it. For many years, the inventor of the car, Felix Huberman, pushed the thresholds of various authorities, proving how Russia needs good roads. No one argued with him, they agreed, but the car remained the only prototype. As the author suggested, all because the roads in our country are much more profitable for someone to repair than to build. In the end, the inventor got tired of the fight, and he went abroad.
And now for the conclusion - a small quote from the program “Roads of Russia of the XXI Century” approved by the President of the country several years ago: “The technical condition of local roads can be considered critical … Due to the influence of surface irregularities … the cost of transportation increases by 30-50%. With this technical condition of the road network, a car on our roads consumes 1.5 times more fuel than in industrialized countries. In poor road conditions, the cost of car maintenance increases by 2.5–3.4 times, the service life is reduced by 30%, and its performance drops by more than 2 times.” Need more comments?
INSTEAD OF DIAGNOSIS