Barge Hits Bridge in Fog

Friday, January 11, 2008
A barge carrying tanks of heavy black oil struck the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge on Thursday evening - but no oil spilled into the bay, authorities said. The crash occurred, as two tugboats were guiding the barge Cascade outbound from Rodeo in foggy conditions, according to Coast Guard officials. As the barge passed beneath the bridge, its right front hit the eastern piling of the western span of the bridge.

There was no initial evidence of damage to the bridge but an examination of the bridge was to take place this morning. Authorities said there also was no evidence that oil spilled. The Cascade is equipped to transport a capacity of 65,195 gallons of oil and it was nearly full, said Coast Guard Capt. John Long at a news conference Thursday night. The investigation will continue in daylight.

The 300-ft.-long barge is double-hulled and there was no damage to the area where the oil is stored, Long said. There was some damage to the barge but Long did not know whether the barge was scraped or whether it had a hole. Long said no oil or other pollution was released into the bay.

Source: SF Chronicle

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