The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Mississippi Valley New Orleans (MVN) District’s Lock and Waterways Status Forecast as issued today (Tuesday, March 15, 2022) is here..
The updated or revised report details are highlighted in bold.
The USACE continues to report various draft and width restrictions at Stouts Pass on the Atchafalaya River since November 2, 2021.
“Atchafalaya River is OPEN with draft and width restrictions at Stouts Pass due to shoaling.”
SCHOONER BAYOU CONTROL STRUCTURE:
The USACE installed the following restrictions due to increased salinity related to low water levels:
“Commencing at 6:00 a.m. on 15 March 2022 and continuing until further notice, mariners are advised that Schooner Bayou Control Structure will go into a restricted locking procedure because of low water and high salinity.
Only outboards and light vessels will be locked through the structure. All tows must use Leland Bowman Lock as an alternate route. The restricted procedure will consist of locking vessels starting at 6:00 a.m., every 2 hours on the even hours, until 6:00 p.m. every day.”
OLD RIVER LOCK:
The Old River Lock will be operated with the restrictions noted below as the emergency bulkhead repairs have resumed and been extended, the restrictions have been extended until July 31, 2022.
“Restrictions are in effect until 31 July 2022. During operation times, the following restrictions/instructions are required for passage:
- Tows are to enter the Lock at DEAD SLOW speed.
- All tows are restricted to no longer than 1100’ in length.
- All tows will line up along the floating guide wall before proceeding.
- Two line-handlers with life vests and bumpers will be required on both approach and exiting of the Lock.
- Vessels must be moored by bow and stern lines to floating timberheads.”
BAYOU BEOUF LOCK:
The chamber guidewall repairs at the Bayou Beouf Lock continue, the repair work will be conducted during scheduled daylight closures to navigation from Monday through Friday until approximately April 30, 2022.
“Bayou Boeuf Lock is closed to navigation from 7 am until 7 pm (Daylight Hours), Mondays thru Fridays until approximately 30 April 2022 to construct the new south side chamber guide wall.”
BAYOU SORREL LOCK:
The USACE updates mariners on the southwest guidewall replacement:
“Part 1: Bayou Sorrel Lock’s Southwest Guidewall replacement began 07 Feb 2022. The U.S. Government Contractor is performing Demolition work to prepare for construction of a new wall and dolphin.
The lock will be intermittently closed during this time. Mariners are urged to be cautious and should enter along the north side of the lock and avoid the southwest guidewall.
The tugboat M/V EFFIE CLARE will be on site to assist with the Contractor’s Crane Barge and will be monitoring VHF marine channels 13 and 16.
Part 2: Beginning in March 2022, when demolition is complete and new wall construction begins, the lock will be closed Mondays through Fridays, from 6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The navigation bulletin will be updated for future lock closures and construction schedules.”
The USACE advises mariners to avoid contact with the Northeast Long Wall Dolphin and to exercise extreme caution in the vicinity of this Wall.
“At Calcasieu Lock until further notice, Mariners are advised to avoid contact with the Northeast Long Wall Dolphin and to use extreme caution when in the vicinity of that wall. This is due to corrosion and degradation of a portion of the structural sheet pile skin plate that a survey indicated exists just below the waterline.”
PORT ALLEN LOCK:
The repairs on the Port Allen Locks Northeast Floating Guidewall are almost complete, but the restrictions listed below remain in effect:
Port Allen Lock’s NE Floating Guidewall is near repaired but has some remaining work to be addressed later.
As a result, the following restrictions are in place until further notice:
All tows with more than one barge are required to use an assist vessel with a line attached at the head of the tow.
Single barge tows will be permitted to lock westbound without an assist vessel.
Do not attempt to “pivot” on the guidewall, therefore, vessels must flatten-out before making contact with the guidewall.”
The USACE advises that the Algiers Lock is open to navigation with normal locking hours with the following restrictions:
“Algiers Lock is currently open to navigation with normal locking hours of operation. Continuing until further notice, mariners are advised to avoid the dolphin at the end of the canal end long guide wall; the dolphin is unstable and a hazard to mariners.
Tow restrictions are still in place in both directions to a maximum width and length of 54 feet W by 700 feet L or 70 feet W by 600 feet L. Mariners are advised to continue to avoid the end of the long, river end, guide wall, which is also unstable and a hazard to mariners.”
INNER HARBOR NAVIGATION CANAL (IHNC):
The USACE reports that the mooring bits on the Canal End Long Guidewall are unstable and issues the following advice to not use the canal end mooring bits:
“Inner Harbor Navigation Canal (IHNC) Lock mariners are advised that the mooring bits located in the long guidewall on the canal end of the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal (IHNC) Lock are very unstable;
you may use the wall to line up on when locking but DO NOT tie off on the mooring bits.”