ATLANTA (FOX 5 Atlanta) - A single photo has caused some Atlanta drivers to panic and has thousands of people talking. FOX 5 News posted the photo of an overpass at Spaghetti Junction on the FOX 5 Atlanta Facebook page. Within the past day, it has been commented on more than 2,500 times and shared more than 4,500 times.
The photo was taken on Interstate 85 southbound. One quick glance and it looks like there's a huge crack in one of the overpasses. The photo has struck fear in the hearts of some drivers and curiosity in the minds of others.
"It looks a little sketchy, like I wouldn't want to go over that," said driver Steve Walker.
Hoping to put an end to the potential widespread panic, GDOT turned to social media saying there is no danger, it's not a crack, it's a commonly used expansion joint.
Part of their post reads: "It allows for elements of a building or bridge, in this case, to safely expand and contract as needed during temperature changes."
FOX 5 News talked to Brian Wolfe, a structural and materials engineer with TEC Services about the photo.
"I see the concern where you can almost see daylight through the expansion joint, but that's how the expansion joint is designed to function," said Wolfe.
Wolfe explained without an expansion joint, the concrete sections would press against each other and crack.
"There's a lot more movement than you realize in concrete structures due to temperature change and you have to have these joints in there and allow for the movement or else you'll compromise the structure," said Wolfe.
That makes sense to some drivers and helped calm some nerves.
"I'm not afraid, we were actually pointing it out on the drive down, showing the kids," said Jessica Pugh who had just driven through Spaghetti Junction.
Still, others weren't buying it. After all, Atlantans are a little snake-bit when it comes to bridges, the I-85 collapse was less than two years ago.
"If all you can go on is the people who built it telling you it's OK, then OK, I guess? It just doesn't look right. I'm not convinced," said Walker.