Ohio River: Locks and Dam 53 – Traffic Restrictions and Navigation Lane Change – For Demolition Blasting

Ohio River: Locks and Dam 53 - Traffic Restrictions and Navigation Lane Change - For Demolition Blasting 

Notice number: 200972
Date: 06/21/2022 thru 07/31/2022

The Corps of Engineers’ contractor, CJ Mahan, will be working on the demolition of Locks and Dam 53 (Ohio River Mile 962.6) for the entire low water season of 2022. Explosives will be used for the demolition. Blasting will begin on or after 21 June 2022 and is expected to take place during periods when the river stage is below 26 feet on the Olmsted Locks and Dam Headwater gage. A blast may take place up to once every day (Monday – Saturday), conditions permitting. It will be necessary to close the river to traffic around L&D 53 while the contractor is in the process of loading the explosives and detonating the blast. These closures are expected to be 4 hours or less and will typically occur between 1000 and 1400 Central Time. The plan is to conduct the blast at approximately 1200 noon Central Time, after all vessels and personnel have cleared the blast area.  A US Coast Guard safety zone will be enforced during loading and blasting activities. The exact details for each day that blasting will occur will be broadcast by the US Coast Guard in a Broadcast Notice to Mariners. Blasting is estimated to end late August 2022.

During this time, vessels will take all direction of the Olmsted Locks and Dam Control Tower.

Northbound vessels will be stopped at Olmsted Locks and Dam (Ohio River Mile 964.6) and southbound vessels at Ohio River Mile 961 upstream of L&D 53 so that there will be no vessels in the vicinity of L&D 53 when the blast is scheduled to occur. CJ Mahan will be operating 1 patrol boat upstream of L&D 53 when wickets are raised at Olmsted L&D and 2 patrol boats when wickets are lowered at Olmsted L&D. See attached drawing for the blasting safety zone. Once the blast has been completed and the all clear issued, the traffic will be released.

In the event that a misfire occurs, and the closure will extend beyond 4 hours, an immediate email notification will be sent out to industry representatives notifying them. A second email notification will be sent as soon as the misfire is cleared and traffic is released.

The navigation lane at L&D 53 (Ohio River Mile 962.6) will be approximately 850 feet in the center of the Navigation Pass to facilitate demolition activities as shown in the attached drawing.

All mariners must exercise caution when transiting. The contractor’s vessel M/V Chris M. will be working in the area and can be reached on Marine Radio Channel 13.

Shawn Kenney
Ch. Technical Support Branch