Water traffic closure planned in Locks and Dam 52 pool

Water travel will be halted Wednesday morning at Locks and Dam 52 on the Ohio River at Brookport, Illinois, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District.

The Corps says it will cut off water releases from Smithland Dam around 3 a.m. Wednesday. By about 5 a.m., it will cease locking at Locks and Dam 52, and navigation will be halted in the Locks and Dam 52 pool. 

That is being done because three wickets — which are gates — broke free from their bases, creating a hole which is affecting operation at Locks and Dam 52 and water levels. The closure will allow the Corps to repair the damage. 

The Corps says navigation may be stopped in that pool from two to seven days or longer, depending on river conditions and work completion. The Corps says other temporary impacts include that "commodities will stop moving up and down the river through this pool" and that "water intakes exposed disrupting water to communities and industries." 

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