Midwest drought causing more severe disruptions to barge traffic

(VICKSBURG, Miss.) — One of the most severe droughts in the nation's history is causing severe disruption to barge commerce, NBC News reported. If rain doesn't arrive soon, the industry may enter "uncharted territory" in terms of the inability to transport cargo on the Mississippi River and inland river system. Loads are lightened by 25 percent to reduce vessels' draft, and the region has experienced 15 to 20 groundings, some of which have stalled traffic.

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By Professional Mariner Staff