Mississippi River ReopensBy Jeffrey Hess | Published 22 Apr 2013 12:51pm |
Barge traffic is flowing again along the Mississippi River after being stalled for nearly a day.
The Coast Guard shut down the river Sunday afternoon because 30 barges broke free of the towboat and collided with the old U.S. Highway 80 railroad bridge near Vicksburg. The bridge has been out of service
The barges have all been either recovered or grounded along the side of the river except for one. That barge sank.
The Coast Guard halted traffic Sunday to determine if the sunken barge was a threat to safe navigation. The delay caused more than 300 barges attempting to go either north or south along the river.
Monday morning the Coast Guard determined that there is enough water over the sunken barge to allow traffic to begin moving again. It is not clear if or when that barge will be recovered.
A spokesman for the Coast Guard said there does not appear to be any environmental damage, or human injuries. It will take a day or more for the backlogged barge traffic to clear and for river traffic to return to normal.
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