Six barges break free after Vicksburg bridge strike

The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:

(NEW ORLEANS) — The Coast Guard is responding to a barge allision at mile marker 435.8 on the Mississippi River near Vicksburg, Miss., on Wednesday.

Watch standers with Coast Guard Sector Lower Mississippi River received a call at 10:19 a.m., stating the towing vessel Wally Roller allided with the Vicksburg Railroad Bridge.

All six barges were reported to have broken free and have now been safely accounted for and traffic has resumed.

The Vicksburg Railroad Bridge will remain closed until a safety inspection is completed by the Vicksburg Bridge Commission and the state of Mississippi.

The Coast Guard is evaluating additional navigation safety measures in order to reduce the potential for future marine accidents.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.

By Professional Mariner Staff