On Feb. 10, emergency repairs at Ohio River Locks and Dam 52, Brookport, Ill., required a complete river closure at that location, according to the USDA Grain Transportation Report.

While repairs were expected to take up to 72 hours, they were completed in 24 hours, according to the USDA. The emergency work was necessary to repair the dam portion of the facility that controls river levels for adequate drafts. 

For the first five weeks of 2015, Locks and Dam 52 handled 1.872 million tons of downbound grain, more than twice the 856 thousand tons that transited Mississippi River Locks 27, near St. Louis, Mo. Mississippi River Locks 27 tonnages are higher most of the year; however, the Ohio River is important to grain transportation in the winter months as much of the Upper Mississippi River is closed, according to the Grain Transportation Report.

During the week ending Feb. 7, barge grain movements totaled 617,429 tons—12% higher than the previous week and 7% lower than the same period last year, according to the USDA.

During the week ending Feb. 7, 367 grain barges moved down river, down 15% from last week; 808 grain barges were unloaded in New Orleans, up 2.7% from the previous week, according to the Grain Transportation Report.