Barges after striking the Emsworth Dam. (Credit: U.S. Coast Guard)

High waters, more hazardous cargo in the Ohio watershed complicate the job of keeping the waterways safe

As the conditions on the Ohio — and its cargo — become more hazardous, key regulatory organizations struggle to keep up with the growing demands of this water highway.

Just before dawn in January 2018, 27 barges were floating like a net along the banks of the Ohio River, downstream of the city of Pittsburgh.

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