Probe begins after 2 barges get loose in Arkansas

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Associated Press

Posted on August 24, 2013 at 4:07 AM

Updated Saturday, Aug 24 at 6:01 AM

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Authorities will try to determine what caused two barges to break free on the Arkansas River in downtown Little Rock, prompting five bridges to temporarily shut down.

The runaway barges struck the Interstate 30 bridge that connects the downtowns of Little Rock and North Little Rock on Friday night. The barges also hit the Clinton Pedestrian Bridge, part of the cities' riverfront trail system.

Authorities reopened the bridges after determining that two barges that escaped from a tugboat only hit an earthen berm protecting the largest of the spans.

The barges made it past the Clinton Presidential Library about a quarter-mile from the Interstate 30 bridge before the tugboat operator caught up and pushed them to the riverbank.

No injuries were reported.

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