Additional Rainfall Contributes to Ongoing Navigation Disruptions

This article has been reprinted from the April 5, 2018 USDA Grain Transportation Report.

As of April 5, widespread rainfall in the lower and middle Mississippi River Valley, extending into the Ohio River Valley, has added additional navigation disruptions to already flooded segments throughout the inland waterway system. 

For example, levels on the Ohio River at Cairo, IL, are already above flood stage but will not crest until April 9. 

Navigation on the lower Mississippi River continues to be restricted to daylight only, though Vicksburg, MS, and Baton Rouge, LA. 

Barge movements in the area between Baton Rouge and New Orleans require additional time and towboats to unload grain and return empty barges upriver, due to high and fast river conditions. 

As of April 3, the weekly change in spot barge rates for export grain has increased 15 percent on the Illinois River, 19 percent on the Upper Mississippi River at Davenport, IA, and 29 percent at St Louis, MO.