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Rising River Levels End Extended Dredging Season

Date Posted: February 14, 2013

This article is reprinted from the USDA's Feb. 14 Grain Transportation Report.

On February 5, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) stopped sediment dredging operations along the Mississippi River between Cairo, IL, and St. Louis, MO, for the season.

The Corps-owned dredging equipment is on standby status until needed.

The dredging season usually ends in early December, but was extended to maintain the shipping channel during the period of low-water levels.

Recent water levels have increased since earlier this winter. Low water also required the removal of rock formations at Thebes and Grand Tower, IL.

Although the rock removal is almost complete, the work has been temporarily suspended because of high water, currents, and debris.

Without additional rain, river hydrograph forecasts by the Corps indicate the river flows will sustain navigation through mid-March.

On March 17, the Corps has scheduled to start navigation flow releases on the Missouri River, which could help increase water levels on the Mississippi River at St. Louis.

For more information, call Surajudeen (Deen) Olowolayemo, USDA, at 202-694-3050.

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