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Barge Crashes Into I-55 Bridge

(Memphis) Another barge hit one of the I-55 bridges for the second time in a week.

The cause can be anything from operator error to weather, and the U.S. Coast Guard in Memphis said it's their job to get to the bottom of it.

Thousands of cars drive over the I-55 bridge between Arkansas and Tennessee everyday, but barges traveling the Mississippi River below have been crashing into it.

"We received a report at 9:00 this morning that a barge had collided with the I-55 bridge," Lt. Brandon McMillan, spokesperson for the U.S. Coast Guard in Memphis, said.

Lt. McMillan said the barge was going north on the river when it hit one of the columns.

"The captian of the tow boat passed that there was no injuries, pollution, or damage," Lt. McMillan explained.

Highway crews checked the bridge for damage, and officers with the Memphis Police Department stopped traffic for a little more than ten minutes to make sure everything was safe.

"We did not close the river," Lt. McMillan said. "The barge did not obscure any river traffic."

However, river traffic was interrupted following another crash over the weekend.

"We had a another collision on Sunday with the railroad bridge," Lt. McMillan said.

"The barge kind of got stuck on the bridge and we notified the railroad companies and they went out and conducted their own investigation on the bridge," he added.

The barge from Wednesday's crash kept going, but the Coast Guard plans to catch up to it to finish getting answers.

Filed in: News

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