Part of Houston Ship Channel closed

A section of the Houston Ship Channel was closed to marine traffic for several hours on Sunday after at least a dozen barges broke loose.

The incident resulted from sudden increases in water current and flood levels in the San Jacinto River after heavy inundation of rain.

US Coast Guard (USCG) restricted access to the waterway north of the I-10 bridge up to Lake Houston. The barges broke away from the Kirby Fleeting Area.

Kirby Inland Marine, which operates the US’ largest fleet of inland tank barges and towing vessels, had secured the majority of the loose barges by Sunday evening but strong currents were making the job difficult.

The rains that led to the incident caused widespread havoc in southeast Texas and were being blamed for at least six deaths in the region.


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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