Equipment from stuck barge in Potomac River sinks by Maryland dam

The larger of two runaway barges on the Potomac River stopped on remnants of Dam No. 3 near Harpers Ferry, W.Va., after the two barges broke free from their moorings following heavy weekend rain.
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The National Park Service’s recovery efforts for two construction barges that got loose on the Potomac River over the weekend now includes equipment that fell off at least one barge.

Equipment, including a small excavator, that was atop the smaller of two construction barges hung up in the Potomac River had fallen off the barge by Tuesday morning, a National Park Service spokeswoman said.

Part of what has been holding the smaller barge in place below Dam No. 4 was water pressure from water coming over the dam, said Christiana Hanson, spokeswoman with the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park. That also meant the barge was bouncing around a lot, she said.

The Flexifloat modular barge, or work platform, was one of two a National Park Service contractor was using for work at McMahons Mill and a stretch of the canal towpath, southwest of Downsville. The barges came loose from their moorings during the weekend and floated down the river on Sunday.

The larger barge was still hung…

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