Reduction In Flow Will Not Hurt Shipping on the Missouri

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BOONVILLE - The Army Corps of Engineers began reducing the flow to the Missouri River, but officials said it will not have an adverse effect on shipping on the Missouri. 

Sherri Turley of the Missouri Port Authority Association said the shipping season on the Missouri River is not year-round, as it is on the Mississippi.

Turley said, however, that the Missouri is a major source of flow for the Mississippi River south of St. Louis. 

Barges have already started to carry lighter loads on the Mississippi, and if the water levels continue to lower, barge traffic may have to be halted.

The Corps. began to reduce the flow at Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota on Friday. The Associated Press reported officials plan to lower the flow from 37,500 cubic feet per second on Friday morning to 12,000 cubic feet per second by mid-December.

Missouri has eight ports south of the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi and $4.1 billion worth of cargo is shipped through Missouri ports annualy.

Turley said conditions on the rivers may not improve until February.