Karl's Feed
May 30, 2013

Floods close Mississippi River locks, halt barge shipments

May 30 (Reuters) – Heavy spring rains across the U.S.
Midwest swelled the Mississippi River above flood stage at some
locations and forced the closure of three river locks on the
major shipping waterway, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said.

At least four more locks were likely to be closed by early
next week, disrupting the flow of grain barge shipments from the
Midwest farm belt to export terminals at the Gulf of Mexico.

May 14, 2013

Slowest plantings ever should trim U.S. corn yields -agronomists

CHICAGO, May 14 (Reuters) – U.S. corn yields are unlikely to
reach their full potential this year as the slowest planting
pace on record shortens the growing season, increasing risks
that plants will pollinate under peak summer heat, agronomists
said on Tuesday.

“We have taken some off of our yield potential,” said
Emerson Nafziger, extension agronomist at the University of
Illinois. “Our preference is to have it in the ground by May 1.”

May 8, 2013

Lock repair to close part of Illinois River at least a week -Army Corps

CHICAGO, May 8 (Reuters) – Barge shipping returned to normal
this week on most of the Illinois River after spring floods, but
lock repairs will halt navigation on a northern stretch for at
least a week beginning on Friday, the Army Corps of Engineers
and Coast Guard said.

Marseilles Lock and Dam near Seneca, Illinois, was
critically damaged when seven barges broke loose from a tow on
April 18, tearing 20-foot (6-meter) holes in two of the dam’s
gates.

May 3, 2013

Mississippi River reopens after oil spill closure: Coast Guard

By Karl Plume

(Reuters) – The Coast Guard reopened a stretch of the Mississippi River near Hartford, Illinois early on Friday as the waterway was deemed safe for navigation following a vessel accident and oil spill near the confluence with the Missouri River.

The river had been closed from mile marker 194 to 198 after a towboat struck an area where barges were tied up along the shore at 12:57 a.m. CDT (0557 GMT) and several barges broke loose, colliding with other facilities and docks, the Coast Guard said.

May 3, 2013

Mississippi River reopens after oil spill closure -U.S. Coast Guard

May 3 (Reuters) – The U.S. Coast Guard reopened a stretch of
the Mississippi River near Hartford, Illinois early on Friday as
the waterway was deemed safe for navigation following a vessel
accident and oil spill near the confluence with the Missouri
River.

The river had been closed from mile marker 194 to 198 after
a towboat struck an area where barges were tied up along the
shore at 12:57 a.m. CDT (0557 GMT) and several barges broke
loose, colliding with other facilities and docks, the Coast
Guard said.

Apr 25, 2013

Damaged Illinois River lock may hinder barges for weeks

April 25 (Reuters) – A northern stretch of the Illinois
River, a main artery for shipping bulk commodities to export
terminals at the Gulf of Mexico, is expected to remain closed
for several weeks as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers works to
repair a lock damaged during recent heavy flooding.

Severe flooding on the waterway has also halted the loading
of corn and soybean barges at terminals along the waterway and
delivery points for CME grain futures contracts, with the
exchange declaring force majeure on Thursday at all terminals it
uses on the river.

Apr 25, 2013

Damaged Illinois River lock may hinder barge traffic for weeks

April 25 (Reuters) – A northern stretch of the Illinois
River may remain closed to commercial shipping traffic for
several weeks as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers works to
repair a lock damaged during recent heavy flooding, the Corps
said on Thursday.

Flooding on the waterway has also halted the loading of corn
and soybean barges at Illinois River terminals, which are
delivery points for CME grain futures contracts. That prompted
the exchange to declare force majeure at most terminals on
Thursday.

Apr 23, 2013

Floods to sideline Mississippi River barges at least another week

April 23 (Reuters) – Barge shipping on the Illinois River
and parts of the Mississippi River will remain impeded until at
least early next week as the flood-swollen waterways slowly
recede from record- or near-record-high crests, according to the
U.S. Coast Guard and Army Corps of Engineers.

But the date when barge shipments of grain can again move
freely from production areas in the Midwest to export facilities
at the Gulf of Mexico may be pushed back as another storm system
moved through the region on Tuesday.

Apr 22, 2013

Mississippi barge traffic snarled by floods, accidents

By Karl Plume

(Reuters) – Commercial shipping traffic was moving again on the Mississippi River south of St. Louis after a pair of barge accidents that forced the U.S. Coast Guard to close the waterway over the weekend, but navigation remained severely impaired further north.

Flooding following torrential rains across the central United States forced the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to close about a dozen locks on the Illinois River and the Mississippi River north of St. Louis late last week.

Apr 22, 2013

Floods, barge accidents halt Mississippi River traffic

April 22 (Reuters) – Barge shipping on the Illinois River
and parts of the Mississippi River was at a standstill on Monday
as flooding forced the closure of numerous locks and crews
worked to recover dozens of barges that broke free in
flood-swollen currents.

The U.S. Coast Guard will close a section of the Illinois
River near Peoria to all traffic later on Monday to protect
levees, and was considering shipping restrictions in other areas
as heavy currents made navigation treacherous.