SAFETY ALERT: BNSF Railway Company Vertical Lift Span Bridge Maintenance & Traffic Restrictions

  1. The Captain of the Port Houma is issuing a safety alert advising all mariners of maintenance work taking place on the BNSF Railway Company Vertical Lift Span Bridge across the Atchafalaya River at Port Allen Route Mile 01 in Morgan City, Louisiana. Repair activities are schedule for January 15 to February 6, 2024. The Railway Vertical Lift Bridge will not open and remain closed to vessel traffic beginning at 8 a.m. for 5-hours on the following dates: January 16, 18, 23, 25, 30 – February 1, 6. Dates and duration of scheduled closures are subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances. Mariners are urged to verify bridge statuses prior to getting underway and conduct appropriate voyage planning.
  2. Two (2) traveling platforms will be placed underneath the lift span section of the bridge and will reduce the bridge’s vertical clearance (in the down and up position) by 4 feet. Each traveling platform is 60’ in length and will be moved to different locations under the lift span throughout the project. These platforms will be lit according to 33 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 118.150.
  3. Mariners are reminded of their ongoing responsibility to conduct and manage their required navigation assessments and voyage plans to prepare bridge teams for encountering known hazards.
  4. For further information on this bulletin or to report any concerns regarding the status of waterways contact one of the phone numbers below:

Marine Safety Unit Houma Officer of the Day (985) 665-2437

Marine Safety Morgan City Officer of the Day:(985) 397-3300

Marine Safety Houma Waterways Management: (985) 665-2449

Marine Safety Morgan City Waterways Management: (985) 855-0724

Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) Berwick Bay:     (985) 380-5370

  1. To access all MSIBs in the COTP Houma Zone visit:


T. O’Brien
Captain, U.S. Coast Guard
Captain of the Port
Houma, Louisiana