Corps Praised For Averting Mississippi River Shutdown

ST. LOUIS (January 10, 2013)-- Barge operators credit the hustle by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for averting a potentially crippling shutdown of the Mississippi River.

Shippers said the Corps of Engineers has done all it can to keep the river open.

The efforts included ongoing work to rid a stretch of the river south of St. Louis of treacherous bedrock, and the agency's release of water from lakes to raise the Mississippi's levels.

The president of Cargill's shipping arm, Rick Calhoun, said, "By hook and by crook it hasn't gotten as bad as we thought."

Barge operators since November had worried that the Mississippi might shrink to a level that would force restrictions on how much cargo barges can carry, effectively halting shipping on the river.

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