Barges strike but don't damage Champ Clark Bridge

Posted: May. 19, 2017 10:20 pm Updated: May. 19, 2017 11:44 pm

LOUISIANA, Mo. -- Inspectors from the Missouri Department of Transportation said the Champ Clark Bridge was safe for traffic after it was struck by drifting barges.

Marisa Ellison, customer relations manager for the MoDOT's Hannibal district, said the bridge showed no damage from the strikes.

The Herald-Whig's news-gathering partners at WGEM reported that Lt. Sean Haley with the U.S. Coast Guard said it received a call about 4:45 a.m. Friday that a load of 15 barges struck the bridge, causing five of the barges to break away.

Haley said 14 of the barges were carrying dry cargo while the other was empty. He said two of the barges are downstream, pushed up against the Louisiana Railway Bridge waiting to be picked up.

Ingram Marine Group, the company hauling the barges, was responsible for retrieving them, Haley said. The Coast Guard was investigating.

Ellison said 10 barges broke away. She said all barges were under control Friday morning.

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