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Soo Locks shipping traffic may be impacted by repairs

Gary Todd|

The Soo Locks came to a halt on Monday, as the large Poe Lock was shut down the Poe Lock to complete emergency repairs.  

86% of all traffic that passes through the Soo Locks, goes through through the Poe. At 1200 feet long, 110 feet wide, and 32 feet deep, the lock is the only one that can transport modern freighters from Lakes Superior and Huron. 


On Monday, traffic was halted so divers could address areas of concrete erosion that were structurally concerning. 


Soo Locks Civil Engineer, Beverly McCreedy, said maintenance closures like this one will affect ships coming through the Poe over the the next few days. 


“When we have an unexpected issue come up and we have to shut down navigation it does ripple through the entire system. It will slow the traffic down for a few days.” 


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is still hoping to start construction on a new lock in the next few years to help keep navigational traffic moving in case of emergency repairs in the future. 


McCreedy said if the Soo builds a new lock, they would be able to keep traffic moving during the navigational season and make more permanent repairs.