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Why is toilet paper filling the streets of Omaha?

Many have noticed streets lined in toilet paper
Posted at 10:21 PM, Nov 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-22 23:21:40-05

OMAHA, Neb. — You might have seen crews working on roads in Omaha the past couple weeks, putting down a white material.

"You see a lot of people looking at us, checking us out," Midwest Coatings project manager Blake Hunter said.

So what is the material exactly?

"A lot of people think that it's something more complicated than toilet paper, but all it is is single ply toilet paper," Hunter said.

That's right, toilet paper. And a lot of it.

"We're doing over 100 miles in the city," Hunter said. 100 miles of road and asphalt all over the metro.

Midwest Coatings was contracted by the city of Omaha for crack sealings. The 3-step process prolongs the life of asphalt to avoid potholes.

"Step one is to clean the cracks and we do that with compressed air," Hunter said.

After cleaning the cracks, they are then sealed.

"Third step is to roll the toilet paper over the top because the material is about 350 degrees when it comes out of the machine," Hunter said.

The toilet paper keeps your tires from sticking to the hot crack sealant.

"It's easy, and it allows our crew to keep moving and allows traffic to not have to wait for an extended period," Hunter said.

After a short while, weather will erode the thin toilet paper. The contractors say this is the only material that is efficient and safe.

"Our only other options are sand and that can be a hazard to the traveling public," Hunter said.

Because weather conditions have to be perfect, crews say it should still take about another month to cover the entire Omaha area in toilet paper.