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Tow hits Mississippi railroad bridge between Iowa, Illinois

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SABULA, Iowa (AP) — The U.S. Coast Guard has shut down a stretch of the Mississippi River between Iowa and Illinois to traffic after a railroad bridge was hit by a towing ship.

Coast Guard Petty Officer Lora Ratliff said Friday that the bridge at Sabula in eastern Iowa was hit just before midnight Thursday by the 145-foot towing ship. Officials say no one was injured.

Ratliff says the bridge and river under it will be closed to traffic until the bridge can be inspected by divers. She couldn’t say how long that would take, noting “each one of these cases is different.”

The boat was towing three loaded grain barges, which broke away after the impact, but were later retrieved. The Coast Guard says nothing spilled into the river.