The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Mississippi Valley New Orleans (MVN) District’s Lock and Waterways Status Forecast as issued today (Friday, July 22, 2022) is here.
The updated or revised report details are highlighted in bold.
OLD RIVER LOCK:
The daylight closures on the Old River Lock to off load the crane will commence on Thursday, July 28 and are schedule to be completed on Monday, August 29, 2022.
“Old River Lock Daylight Only closures to navigation from 6:00 am to 7:30 pm will not commence until Thursday, 28 July 2022, and continue through Monday, 29 August 2022.
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.”
The dewatering of the Old River Lock is scheduled to start on August 30 and completion is expected on November 12 (2022), the dewatering is required to install two miter gates and repair lock expansion joints, which will necessitate the continuous closure.”
“New Start Date. Old River Lock will be closed to navigation commencing on approximately 30 August 2022 and continuing through approximately 12 November 2022, for installation of two miter gates and repairing lock chamber expansion joints, which will necessitate the continuous closure.”
The emergency bulkhead carriage repairs continue at the Old River Lock, restrictions are expected to last until July 31, 2022.
“Restrictions are in effect until 31 July 2022. During operation times, the following restrictions/instructions are required for passage:
1. Tows are to enter the Lock at DEAD SLOW speed.
2. All tows are restricted to no longer than 1100’ in length.
3. All tows will line up along the floating guide wall before proceeding.
4. Two line-handlers with life vests and bumpers will be required on both approach and exiting of the Lock.
5. Vessels must be moored by bow and stern lines to floating timberheads.”
BAYOU SORREL LOCK:
The Bayou Sorrel Lock will continue to operate with transit cautions and daylight closures and the USACE urges caution on the north side of the lock to avoid contacting the SW side construction activities.
“On-going at Bayou Sorrel Lock, mariners are urged to be Cautious and enter along the north side of the lock and avoid contacting the SW side construction preparation activities. All northbound mariners with vessels greater than 35 feet wide are strongly encouraged to use an assist boat faced up on the bow of the lead barge to act as a bow thruster when entering the lock from the south. All southbound mariners shall use extreme caution and maintain a slow bell when exiting the lock until clear of the construction zone.”
The Bayou Sorrel Lock is schedule for regular closures beginning on August 1, 2022 expected to last until March 2023:
“01 AUGUST 2022
On or about 01 August 2022, regular closures will begin and remain in place until approximately March 2023 for construction of the new SW Guide Wall.
Closure times will be from 7am – 7pm Mondays thru Thursdays.
Delays should be expected but during closure times, opportunities for vessel passage may occur and will be utilized.
Passage during all other times will be allowed and queues will be managed by lock personnel to achieve the most efficient reduction of queues.”
The industry cutterhead dredge MIKE HOOKS will be dredging the forebay of the above listed Locks when it completes work in the New Orleans Harbor.
“Commencing on 13 July 2022 and continuing until approximately 15 August 2022, the U.S. Government Contract Cutterhead Dredge MIKE HOOKS will be working in the forebays at Harvey, Industrial Harbor Navigation Canal (IHNC), and Algiers Locks.
The Dredge will work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and will be monitoring VHF channels 16 and 67. Mariners are advised to continue to adhere to any other special instructions already in place at the locks.”
PORT ALLEN LOCK:
The USACE advises mariners of upcoming scheduled daytime closures (0600 hours to 1830 hours) at the Port Allen Lock to install tainter valves from until July 30 (2022):
“Port Allen Lock will be closed to navigation beginning on 20 July 2022 and continuing through 30 July 2022, from 6:00 a.m. until 6:30 p.m., each day.”
The Port Allen Lock’s Northeast Floating Guidewall are almost repaired but additional work is required at a later date.
“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 following notice to mariners advises mariners to avoid contacting the Northeast Long Wall Dolphin:
“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.”
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.”