Every year since 1987, The city of Missoula has helped to make its streets more weather resistant by applying a sealant as part of the City's Chip Seal Street Maintenance Program. On Monday July 16, crews will begin to apply the sealant (which is a combination of oil and uniform bits of stone)  with the goal of preventing potholes, cracks, and other forms of surface erosion.

Even after the application process, bits of stone will still be around for two to three weeks. Missoula Street Superintendent Brian Hensel says "after the chips are applied we would like to ask motorists, motorcyclists and bicyclists specifically to please be extremely cautious. Drive slow, be aware that the chips are loose and that they can be hazardous."

While the loose stone is still on the streets, sharp turns and quick stops can be deadly. Those that happen to step in the sealant before it is dry should be aware that it is not designed to come out of carpet and can easily end up permanently damaging absorbent materials of all kinds.  Crews expect to be finished with the project by August 2.