A damaged lock on the Columbia River that has stalled the flow of grain and other commodities through the U.S. Pacific Northwest will reopen on Sept. 30, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said in a Sept. 11 statement.
The Bonneville navigation lock will return to service, allowing vessels to pass through the lock, beginning at 10 a.m. Sept. 30, according to officials at the Corps’ Portland District.
“This lock closure is significant, which is why our engineers, experts and contractors are working tirelessly to ensure we get the locks back in service as quickly as possible. It is not lost on anyone in the Portland District that this outage has tremendous impacts to Columbia River users,“ said Corps Portland District Commander Col. Aaron Dorf. “Between now and Sept. 30, our teams will be working around the clock to construct the new sill to restore Columbia River traffic.”
The navigation lock was closed on Sept. 5 after lock operators detected problems. During an inspection, engineers discovered there were cracks in the downstream concrete sill, a structure against which lock gates create a water-tight seal. Work on the lock will include demolishing the 100-foot-long sill, drilling holes for rebar, forming the new sill structure and allowing time for the concrete to cure, the Corps said.