UPDATE: Lock and Dam 11 opens after emergency repairs
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reopened Lock and Dam 11 in Dubuque around noon Wednesday. Crews had closed it the day before for emergency repairs.
Inspectors found cracks on the anchorage components of one of the miter gates, which allow boats to pass through.
Mechanical engineer Brad Houzengay said it's not typical for that equipment to crack, but said it isn't surprising given the age of the dam. He said it was built in the 1930s.
Houzengay said crews only needed to make temporary repairs because they're replacing all of the miter gates next week.
The closure did stall traffic on the Mississippi. Barges were stopped around the dam waiting for it to open.
"You can see upstream and downstream that there are several tows waiting to use the chamber so it definitely slows transportation of good up and down the river while it's closed," Houzengay said.
He says the dam will close periodically when they begin to replace the gates next week. But he says industry professionals are notified of those closures months in advance.