Hot Temps Lowering Water Levels

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)-- The heat has left some boat owners stranded because of low water levels.  And there are concerns that barges on major rivers could soon face the same problem.

The scorching weather has dropped water levels down on many smaller tributaries and rivers, like the Meramec. And that might soon spread to barge and commercial traffic on the Missouri and Mississippi.

Many boat owners at the Meramec Marine find themselves stranded on an island of water. The water level at the marina is down 8 to 10 feet below normal. It’s the type of thing that usually happens in August. And it means pleasure boats can no longer get from the Meramec to the marina.

Meantime barge traffic continues as normal on the Missouri and Mississippi. But if this weather hangs on for another couple of weeks, commercial traffic on the big rivers could face delays too. It's something everyone from the corps of engineers to pleasure boaters are watching.

The army corps say if the weather continues another two weeks, the major rivers could run into problem and dredging operations will have to begin in the shipping channels.

But for now, the Mississippi and Missouri remain open. But only because the flood waters from two weeks ago in Minnesota are flowing past here.