The following is the text of a news release from Conrad Shipyard:
(MORGAN CITY, La.) — Conrad Shipyard has been awarded a contract by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the construction of a crane barge that will operate on the Olmsted Locks and Dam Project. Johnny Conrad, Conrad president and chief executive officer, made the announcement.
The crane barge, which will be built at Conrad’s Morgan City shipyard, has a hull length of 110 feet 6 inches, a beam of 60 feet and molded depth of 8 feet 6 inches. In addition to barge construction, Conrad will also install two government-supplied cranes: a wicket lifter crane and a telescoping marine crane.
The floating crane barge will be used to raise and lower the steel dam wickets and perform maintenance functions at the Olmsted Lock and Dam on the Ohio River. When raised, wickets block water and feed it to adjacent boat locks that safely harbor barges to a lower elevation when the river is low. The barge will be ABS classified as a Maltese Cross A-1 Barge, Maltese Cross AMS, CRC, for service on rivers and intracoastal waterways as a government floating crane.
The Olmsted Locks and Dam Project is the largest and most expensive inland water navigation installation ever built in the United States. More than 90 million tons of material is shipped through the locks annually.