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Hutchens featured in "Better Roads"

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A local company was highlighted in the November issue of "Better Roads" magazine, a national publication for those in road construction and state and federal departments of transportation.

Phil Hutchens, of Hutchens Construction Company in Cassville, was one of three profile business operators featured in an interview concerning recycling roof shingles into asphalt pavement.

Hutchens spoke on both the economic and environmental benefits of recycling roofing shingles into asphalt,

The practice of grinding roofing shingles into a product that can be used on road surfaces first started in the late 1990s, and today has grown to encompass approximately a million tons per year. Those shingles would normally be destined for local landfills.

Unfortunately, about 10 million tons of shingles still make landfills each year instead of providing a vital component, liquid asphalt cement, to be used on the nation's millions of roadway miles.

Hutchens said in the article that his company could recycle a ton of shingles at a cost of about $30. It takes four tons of shingles to make one ton of liquid asphalt cement through the recycling operation, compared to $500 per ton for virgin liquid asphalt cement.

Additionally, the recycling process recovers about three tons of sand.

Hutchens said the initial motivation for his company to start the recycling effort was the environmental factor rather than economic.

Now that recycling shingles into asphalt has been endorsed by the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT), it has become a common practice across the state.

"Better Roads" magazine is a division of Randall Reilly Publications, of Tuscaloosa, Ala.



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