Saturday, June 15, 2024
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26 barges break loose in Pittsburgh, travel down Ohio River

More than two dozen barges broke loose in Pittsburgh, drifting in an “uncontrolled” manner down the Ohio River, the City of Pittsburgh announced.
At around 11:25 p.m. Friday, 26 barges broke free from a facility near Peggy’s Harbor, a marina on the Ohio River’s northern bank, Eyobe Mills, a spokesperson for the U.S. Coast Guard, told The Post.
Twenty-three of the vessels were loaded with dry cargo such as coal, and three were empty. There were no injuries or pollution reported, but Peggy’s Harbor saw “extensive damage,” the city said.
26 barges broke free from a facility near Peggy’s Harbor, a marina on the Ohio River’s northern bank. Joe Sohm/Visions of America/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Eleven of the barges were pinned against the river bank near Brunot Island. Fourteen drifted down the river and six traveled over the Emsworth Dam. There was no word if the barges that went over the dam caused damage.
As a result, bridge and rail traffic were temporarily shut down.
All but one of the vessels had been accounted for as of roughly 3 p.m. Saturday, Mills said. Officials are trying to locate the missing barge, he added, before they proceed with an investigation.
Getty Images
“This is a dynamic situation so things are changing all the time,” Mills said.
Campbell Transportation Company, a marine transportation and services business that owns the barges, didn’t respond to a request for comment. The company told KDKA in a statement that it is collaborating with authorities, but noted, “The incident occurred under high water conditions on the rivers resulting in strong currents due to flooding in the area.”

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