Grain barges break away after towboat strikes Miss. River bridge

The following is the text of a press release issued by the U.S. Coast Guard:
(MEMPHIS, Tenn.) — The Coast Guard is responding to a bridge allision in Carruthersville, Mo., which resulted in the closure of the Mississippi River and the I-155 bridge, Monday.
At approximately 5 p.m., the Coast Guard received a call from a crewmember aboard the towing vessel Joyce Hale, that while pushing 20 loaded grain barges, it allided with the I-155 bridge near Carruthersville. The crewmember also reported the allision caused all 20 barges to break away and that one barge is taking on water.
Coast Guard Sector Lower Mississippi River closed the Mississippi River from mile marker 840 to 833 to facilitate recovery of the barges.
Local authorities have closed the bridge to vehicular traffic until the bridge can be inspected by the Tennessee Department of Transportation.
Coast Guard Sector Mississippi River is investigating the cause of the incident and no polution or injuries were reported.
By Professional Mariner Staff