AmericasDry CargoOperations

Roger Blough refloated

A freighter that grounded in Lake Superior more than a week before has been refloated and moved under its own power to safely anchor in Waiska Bay, Michigan.

The Roger Blough, which was carrying iron ore pellets from the Twin Ports (of Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin) to Conneaut, Ohio, had run aground on May 27 on Gros Cap Reef in Whitefish Bay.

The 24-person crew had remained on board the 850-foot vessel during the eight days of assessment, planning and operation to lighter and refloat the ship.

Parties involved included the US Coast Guard (USCG), the US Army Corps of Engineers and the Roger Blough’s owners the Canadian National Railway’s Duluth-based Great Lakes Fleet.

Although under its own power the bulk carrier was aided by tugboats.

The Upper St. Mary’s River, running between Michigan and Ontario, Canada, was closed to traffic west from the locks and the Waiska Bay anchorage area was closed to vessels not part of the operation.

In Waiska Bay, the Roger Blough is being assessed for repairs. The rest of its cargo not already removed in the lightering is being transferred to other cargo ships.

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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