Barge traffic on the upper Mississippi River was slowed on Oct. 24 when a 600-foot section of the river was closed to remove 1,400 tons of rock that was dislodged from a barge, a river official said.
"This morning a barge broke away from a tow and dumped a load of rock in the middle of the channel," said Charles Camillo, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spokesman. "No other barges were involved," he said.
The accident occurred near mile marker 16, located about 16 river miles north of Cairo, Ill. Dredging vessels were on the site to remove the rock pile that measured 40 ft. wide and 100 ft. long.
"At some places there is only 6 ft. of water covering the rock, which is below the minimum 9-ft. draft needed for barges," Camillo said.