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Cargo completely removed from freighter Roger Blough

Authorities say the Roger Blough's iron ore has been successfully offloaded and is headed to its destination. The offloading of the cargo from the freighter was completed around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, the U.S. Coast Guard announced. The Blough had p...

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The freighter Philip R. Clarke (right) took on iron ore pellets from the Roger Blough (left) on Tuesday after the Blough ran aground May 27 near Gros Cap Reefs on eastern Lake Superior. The Blough was refloated Saturday; lightering operations ended on Tuesday. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Craig Groman)
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Authorities say the Roger Blough's iron ore has been successfully offloaded and is headed to its destination.

The offloading of the cargo from the freighter was completed around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, the U.S. Coast Guard announced.

The Blough had picked up a load of iron ore in Duluth before it ran aground May 27 near Gros Cap Reefs in Whitefish Bay, about 10 miles west of Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., in eastern Lake Superior.

The Blough's cargo was offloaded onto the Philip R. Clarke and the Arthur M. Anderson, which have now departed from Waiska Bay to deliver the iron ore.

The 858-foot Blough had been freed from the lake floor Saturday morning after lightering part of its load onto the Clarke. The Coast Guard announced Saturday morning that the freighter was traveling under its own power before anchoring farther east in Waiska Bay. The bay anchorage area remains closed to all vessels not part of the operation.

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A detailed damage assessment of the Blough will be conducted once there are favorable weather conditions, according to the Coast Guard. The assessment results are expected to determine the extent of the repairs and the mode of transit to the Blough's final destination.

A National Transportation Safety Board representative has been on scene to assist the Coast Guard in determining the cause of the grounding.

Canadian National Railway, owner of the Blough, contracts with Keystone Shipping Co. to operate its lake freighters. Keystone told the News Tribune last week it was conducting its own internal investigation into the cause of the grounding.

Related Topics: LAKE SUPERIORSHIPPING
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