Mississippi River levels impact barge traffic - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Mississippi River levels impact barge traffic

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On Wednesday afternoon, The Mississippi River level was just shy of 16 feet in Dubuque. Although the flood stage for the river is 17 feet, some areas of Dubuque are already showing signs of flooding.

The Ice Harbor flood gates are currently closed in the Port of Dubuque. Steven Cavanaugh is fleet manger for Newt Marine in Dubuque, a company that offers fleeting, marine construction, dredging, dry docking, barge rentals, specialized towing and a terminal facility. Cavanaugh said when the Ice Harbor flood gates close, employees with Newt Marine move all equipment the company needs outside of the flood gates.

Cavanaugh said the higher waters also have an impact on barges traveling on the river. He said the barges will be taking the trip a little slower, but he said they will not make a stop.

"It makes the whole trip a little longer, but they don't stop going because of high water. They will always keep moving. The commodity is to important." Cavanaugh said.

Cavanaugh said the barges will also need to take their time in order to safely pass through locks and dams as well as brides.

Cavanaugh said he believes the high waters will only delay barges arrivals by a day.

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