UPDATE: Dredging, shipwreck removal resumes on Fox River

UPDATED Monday, April 14, 2014 --- 10:14 a.m.

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- Dredging and shipwreck removal has resumed on the Fox River near Green Bay.

Press-Gazette Media reported Sunday that dredging resumed last week after workers called it quits for the winter last fall. Tetra Tech, the company overseeing the work, also plans to resume removing tugboat and barge wreckage behind its Green Bay facility.

Green Bay-area paper companies are under federal orders to remove polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, from the river. PCBs are chemicals used in the 1950s and 1960s to produce carbonless copy paper.

Workers have dredged more than 2.16 million cubic yards of sediment since cleanup began in 2009. They expect to remove about 670,000 cubic yards before ending work for the season this fall.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press


UPDATED Tuesday, November 19, 2013 --- 10:11 a.m.

DE PERE, Wis. (AP) -- The effort to clean up the Lower Fox River of contaminated sediment is focusing on five sunken vessels which need to be removed before work can resume next year.

The government-ordered dredging and capping project is mainly done for the season and the work barge has been docked and battened down. Now, contractors are concentrating on removing the sunken tug boats and barges from the bottom of the river.

Neville Public Museum curator Kevin Cullen tells WLUK-TV an area just north of the Canadian National rail bridge in Green Bay was used as a ship boneyard in the early 1900s. Two of the vessels to be removed are believed to be tugboats. The others are wooden barges.

Project officials say PCB contamination in the shallow water where the wrecks are located is high.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press


Posted: Sunday, November 10, 2013 --- 4:40 p.m.

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- Efforts to dredge toxic industrial chemicals from the Fox River will also mean the removal of five sunken vessels.

Press-Gazette Media reports (http://gbpg.net/1ahui63) the wrecks were no surprise to J.F. Brennan Co. Inc., hired by area paper companies to clean polychlorinated biphenyls from the river.

They are behind Tetra Tech. Company spokesman Richard Feeney says they are tugboats and barges either intentionally sunk or allowed to sink decades ago after they couldn't be used anymore.

Since they can't be left there, the plan is to photograph the more recognizable pieces, compile existing photographs and information about the early days of the area's shipping industry and construct a display at the Neville Public Museum.

Brennan will complete most of this season's dredging soon and then start bringing up the wrecks.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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