The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is working to restore the deficient reaches of the Mississippi River Ship Channel (MRSC) in the area of Southwest Pass with two industry hopper dredges and one government hopper dredge. The industry hopper dredges BAYPORT and NEWPORT and the USACE’s hopper dredge WHEELER are working on assignments in the area of Southwest Pass. The dustpan dredges, JADWIN and WALLACE McGEORGE continuing working on the Crossings Above New Orleans and will soon be joined by the industry hopper dredge GLENN EDWARDS. The focus on channel maintenance is shifting upriver to the Crossings Above New Orleans as the water levels begin to rapidly recede. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Weather Service’s Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Baton Rouge Gauge predicts a drop from 30.4 feet to 16.8 feet on July 24, 2020 – a difference of 13.6 feet.
SOUTHWEST PASS (SWP) TRANSIT RESTRICTIONS:
The controlling draft for all vessels transiting Southwest Pass remains 45 feet (freshwater).
The Bar Pilots increased their maximum draft recommendation to 45 feet (freshwater) on June 10, 2020.
The Federal Pilots raised their maximum draft recommendation to 45 feet (freshwater) on June 11, 2020.
The Crescent Pilots increased their maximum draft recommendation to 46 feet freshwater on May 30, 2020 apparently due to improving conditions in the area of Cubits Gap.
INDUSTRY HOPPER DREDGE(S) IN THE AREA OF SOUTHWEST PASS (SWP):
NEWPORT: The hopper dredge NEWPORT (Manson Construction) is undergoing minor repairs but expected to resume dredging by tomorrow morning. The NEWPORT began dredging under the first Gulf Coast Regional Hopper Dredge Contract 2020 on February 1, 2020. The NEWPORT will begin dredging on the Gulfport Ship Channel (Mississippi) under the Regional Contract upon completing the assignment in SWP (estimated to depart on June 30, 2020).
BAYPORT: The hopper dredge BAYPORT (Manson Construction) is dredging in the area of Cubits Gap (Mile 3.5 Above Head of Passes [AHP] to Mile 3.0 AHP). The BAYPORT began dredging in SWP on June 18, 2020 and will work in SWP for approximately 30 days to complete hours on Calcasieu River Hopper Dredge Rental Contract 19C0076.
GOVERNNMENT HOPPER DREDGE(S) IN SOUTHWEST PASS (SWP):
WHEELER: The USACE hopper dredge WHEELER is dredging on assignment from Mile 12 BHP to Mile 15 BHP. The WHEELER commenced dredging under Southwest Pass Readiness Exercise #1-2020 at 0011 hours on June 24th the Readiness Exercise is scheduled to be completed on July 6th (2020).
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) AT THE NEW ORLEANS HARBOR:
CAPTAIN FRANK: Weeks Marine’s cutterhead dredge CAPTAIN FRANK began dredging on assignment from Napoleon Avenue to Milan Street City Front Wharves yesterday afternoon (June 25, 2020). The cutterhead is responding to New Orleans Harbor Cutterhead Rental Contract #4-2019.
DUSTPAN DREDGE(S) ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
The MVN is dredging to restore or maintain the central 250 feet of the channel (authorized width is 500 feet) on the Crossings Above New Orleans with two dustpan dredges and an industry hopper dredge. The third dustpan dredge (HURLEY) is expected to arrive on the Crossings over the weekend.
WALLACE McGEORGE: The industry dustpan dredge continues dredging the central 250 feet of the channel at Red Eye Crossing (Mile 224 AHP). The WALLACE McGEORGE is now expected to move downriver to begin dredging at Alhambra Crossing (Mile 190.5 AHP) on Sunday, June 28th. The White Castle Anchorage (Mile 191.1 AHP to Mile 190.4 AHP) will be off limits for vessel usage beginning at noon today (6/26/20). A Marine Safety Information Bulletin issued by the U.S. Coast Guard is attached. The WALLACE McGEORGE commenced dredging on the Crossings on Thursday, May 21, 2020.
JADWIN: The dustpan dredge continues dredging the central 250 feet of channel at Belmont Crossing (Mile 154 .2 AHP). The JADWIN began dredging on the Crossings on Thursday, May 21, 2020.
HURLEY: The government dustpan dredge HURLEY is expected to commence dredging at Red Eye Crossing (Mile 224 AHP) by June 28, 2020.
INDUSTRY HOPPER DREDGE(S) ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
GLENN EDWARDS: The industry hopper dredge GLENN EDWARDS (Manson Construction) is transiting upriver to begin working on assignment at Medora Crossing (Mile 212 AHP). The GLENN EDWARDS began dredging in Southwest Pass on March 20, 2020 under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #13-2019. This contract has been extended and the hopper dredge is now expected to complete work on approximately July 20, 2020.
The Carrollton Gauge (New Orleans) reading at 0900 hours today was 11.52 feet with a 24-hour change of – 0.37 feet.
NOAA’s National Weather Service’s Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Carrollton Gauge indicates a steady fall to 6.7 feet on July 24, 2020.
The Baton Rouge Gauge reading at 1000 hours today was 31.21 feet with a 24-hour change of – 0.88 feet.