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Weekly Barge Grain Shipments Continue to Decline

For several weeks, high water on the Upper Mississippi River has slowed barge traffic

For the week ending July 21, grain barge shipments on the locking portions of the Mississippi, Ohio, and Arkansas rivers experienced a second week of decreased barge tonnages, says the Grain Transportation Report.

For several weeks, high water on the Upper Mississippi River has slowed barge traffic from St. Paul, MN, to Davenport, IA. Delays are also occurring at Melvin Price Locks and Dam, on the Mississippi River, due to repair work that has closed the main, 1,200-foot lock chamber.

Barges can transit the smaller, 600 foot auxiliary chamber, but at a reduced pace.

The Melvin Price repairs are expected to be completed by the end of July. Traffic delays are also occurring at Ohio River Locks and Dam 52, near Lockport, IL, where operational difficulties at the dam earlier in the month closed the river.

As of July 21, calendar year-to-date grain barge tonnages were 21 million tons, about the same as the 3-year average, but 9% lower than last year at this time.

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