Ice continues to delay barge shipments

Heavier-than-normal ice accumulations are continuing to slow traffic along the Illinois River, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Heavy ice conditions are also affecting movements on the upper Ohio River and along the Mississippi River near St. Louis. Barge movements at the La Grange Lock and Dam on the Illinois River were reduced to 17,000 tons of corn and soybeans for the week ending Jan. 11, according to the USDA. That’s significantly lower than the same period last year, when grain movements were 195,000 tons.

On Jan. 10, barge traffic at Illinois River lock 8 was halted due to emergency lock repairs. A limited number of barges have been able to bypass the lock by using the navigable pass of the dam to travel downstream, USDA said. However, due to the heavy ice, less water is available for navigation from upstream dams, and traffic has stopped at the dam. River levels may rise and allow traffic through the dam before lock repairs are completed, which is expected to be on Jan. 17, the USDA said. 

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