WILLIAMSPORT, MD — There’s an update on the two barges that got loose on the Potomac River during Mother’s Day flooding in the area.
The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park posted an update Tuesday.
“Contractors have finalized a plan and will initiate recovery operations to remove the larger barge currently in place on the remnants of Potomac Dam No. 3 beginning this week,” according to the update.
The contractor estimates that it will take at least four weeks to remove the barge. Removal efforts are weather dependent and may be delayed or prolonged by rain or flooding.
The smaller barge, previously held by the water currents at Potomac Dam No. 4, was safely pulled away from the dam on May 12 and has been completely removed from the river.
The excavator and other smaller equipment that came off the deck of the smaller barge are visible with the water levels down. The contractor is currently developing a plan to recover the equipment that came off the deck of the smaller barge.
To ensure public safety during the removal of the larger barge, signed closures will be in place during the retrieval process. The Potomac Street Extension/Armory Canal Trail will be closed to the public at the trail’s south end (gated), and access to Potomac Street off Bakerton Road will be closed to the public.
All river users are recommended to stay as far to the Maryland shore (referred to as river left when looking downstream) as possible to avoid this area. Please do not approach with other vessels or attempt to board the barges.
Removal efforts are weather dependent and may be delayed or prolonged by rain or flooding
For more information on the barges, visit https://www.nps.gov/choh/learn/news/2022-05_08-barges.htm