VICKBURG, Miss. — The US Coast Gurad reported that a barge carrying 80,000 gallons of crude oil struck a railroad bridge on Sunday, Jan. 27, in Vicksburg, Miss., spilling an undetermined amount of oil into the Mississippi River, closing the waterway for miles each way. Reports say that a second barge was also damaged.
Coast Guard spokesman Lt. Ryan Gomez told the press on Monday that at least 21 other vessels such as towboats and barges are stalled by the river closing as crews with booms and a skimming device are removing hundreds of gallons of oily water from the river.
St Louis Post Dispatch reports:
The barges are owned by Third Coast Towing LLC, Gomez said. According to a website listed under that name, the company is located in Corpus Christi, Texas. No one answered the telephone at the company Sunday night.
Both vessels were being pushed by the tugboat Nature’s Way Endeavor. The website for Nature’s Way Marine LLC of Theodore, Ala., identifies the vessel as a 3,000-horsepower, 90-foot-long boat. It was built in 1974 and underwent a complete rebuild in 2011, according to the company.
Cleanup crews continue to work to removed the oil from the leaking barge.
No injuries were reported at the time of the accident.
The incident remains under investigation at this time.