Bridge in Ontario out of action after being hit by heavy-lift vessel

Bridge in Ontario out of action after being hit by heavy-lift vessel

A bridge in Port Colborne in Ontario, Canada, was out of commission on Thursday and expected to remain so for at least another day after a ship hit it.

The Lena J (9,928 dwt, built 1998) a multi-purpose heavy-lift vessel was en route from Montreal to Burns Harbour in Indiana in the US when the crash happened along the St Lawrence Seaway.

The bridge, known as Bridge 19, which carries Highway 3 traffic, suffered a visibly bent steel support girder among other signs of damage.

Authorities said nobody was hurt in the incident and, although it showed broken windows, the Lena J was seaworthy enough to travel on to Port Colborne to have temporary repairs. There was no sign of water pollution after the event.

Port Colborne is a city on Lake Erie, at the southern end of the Welland Canal in southern Ontario. Shipping along the Welland Canal was briefly suspended after Wednesday’s crash.

A spokesperson for the St Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation said an investigation was under way into the cause of the crash and to determine the damage done to the bridge.

The Lena J, which has 800 tons of lifting capacity, is operated by German firm Jungerhans Reederei.

Donal Scully

With 28 years experience writing and editing for newspapers in the UK and Hong Kong, Donal is now based in California from where he covers the Americas for Splash as well as ensuring the site is loaded through the Western Hemisphere timezone.

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