Mississippi River closed to vessels at St. Louis

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ST. LOUIS – The Mississippi River is now closed to all vessel traffic at St. Louis, the result of severe flooding.

The U.S. Coast Guard on Friday shut down the river for a five-mile stretch, citing not only the extremely high water but also the swift current.

The river is already more than 8 feet (2.4 meters) above flood stage at St. Louis and expected to rise another 4 feet (1.2 meters) by Monday.

Closure of river traffic at one of the largest cities on the Mississippi is a huge blow for commerce since many goods are shipped on barges up and down the river.

It isn’t clear when the river will reopen at St. Louis.

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