Marine Accident Brief: Barge Breakaway and Contact with Interstate 10 Bridge, September 19, 2019

​​On September 19, 2019, at 2338 local time, during historic flood waters and high river current, 11 barges broke free from a San Jacinto River barge fleeting area just north of the Interstate 10 (I-10) bridge in Channelview, Texas, and 6 barges struck pier columns supporting the I-10 bridge. No pollution or injuries were reported. Total damages, including repairs to the I-10 bridge ($5.11 million) and removal of and repairs to the barges ($350,000), exceeded $5.46 million. ​The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the barge breakaway and contact with the I-10 bridge was the force of the river current acting on the moored barges at the San Jacinto River Fleet, which exceeded the capacity of the mooring lines, due to the extreme rise and flow of water in the San Jacinto River from Lake Houston dam’s uncontrolled spillway release of water during a historic rainfall event. Contributing was the operating company not rearranging fleeting area tiers to mitigate the effect of current on barge tiers.​


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Maps; Photos;
  • Pagination: 13p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01776563
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: NTSB/MAB-21/14, Accident ID: DCA19FM052
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jul 14 2021 5:10PM