Two vessel collision causes barges to break loose, bridge closure
GRAMERCY - The Coast Guard said late Thursday, a collision between river towing vessels was responsible for some barges breaking loose and forcing a short closure of the Veterans Memorial Bridge.
Louisiana State Police said the U. S. Coast Guard closed the bridge on LA 3213 after 3 p.m. and reopened it about an hour later at 4 p.m.
Hours later, the Coast Guard reported the collision resulted in barges getting loose and one, loaded with caustic soda, overturned. The overturned barge released an unknown amount of the solution. The barge was loaded with about 23, 672 gallons of it, the Coast Guard said in its news release about the situation. But, officials said the product will dissipate and poses a minimal risk to the vicinity of the barge.
Water treatment facilities downstream were told to monitor for any contamination. There were no advisories to water customers as of this post.
Other barges were secured and river traffic was open. The Coast Guard is investigating the cause of the incident.