Mississippi River traffic resumes after barge slams into lock gate near Granite City

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by JIM SUHR and JIM SALTER

Associated Press

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 6:57 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 23 at 1:34 PM

ST. LOUIS -- Mississippi River shipping is back in business again near St. Louis, a day after a key lock and dam was closed when a barge damaged a gate.

Coast Guard Lt. Colin Fogarty says the auxiliary lock near Granite City, Ill., reopened about 10 p.m. Tuesday after the Army Corps of Engineers made sufficient repairs.

But the shutdown is causing a lingering snarl of barge traffic. Fogarty says 106 barges and 19 vessels were lined up, waiting to pass through the lock as of 7 a.m. Wednesday.

The corps says the gate to the 600-foot-long lock was damaged about 5 a.m. Tuesday when a barge got caught up on it.

Fogarty says the accident had nothing to do with the river’s low water levels.

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