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Title 33

Displaying title 33, up to date as of 9/16/2021. Title 33 was last amended 9/16/2021.

Title 33

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§ 117.118 Tombigbee River.

(a) The draw of the Meridian and Bigbee Railroad (MNBR) vertical lift span bridge across the Tombigbee River, mile 128.6 (Black Warrior Tombigbee (BWT) Waterway mile 173.6), at Naheola, shall operate as follows:

(1) The draw shall be maintained in the fully open-to-navigation position for vessels at all times, except during periods when it is closed for the passage of rail traffic.

(2) When a train approaches the bridge, it will stop and a crewmember from the train will observe the waterway for approaching vessels. If vessels are observed approaching the bridge, they will be allowed to pass prior to lowering the bridge. The crewmember will then announce via radiotelephone on VHF-FM channel 16 that the bridge is preparing to be lowered. If, after two minutes, no response has been received, the crewmember will initiate the lowering sequence.

(3) After the train has completely passed over the bridge, the crewmember will initiate the raising sequence. When the bridge is in the fully open-to-navigation position, the crewmember will announce via radiotelephone on VHF-FM channel 16 that the bridge is in the fully open-to-navigation position.

(4) To request openings of the bridge when the lift span is in the closed-to-navigation position, mariners may contact the MNBR via VHF-FM channel 16 or by telephone at 205-654-4364.

(b) The draw of the Norfolk Southern Railroad (NSRR) Vertical Lift Bridge across the Tombigbee River, mile 89.9, near Jackson, Washington and Clarke Counties, Alabama shall be operated as follows:

(1) The draw shall be kept in the open-to-vessel position, except during periods when it will close for the passage of rail traffic or to perform periodic maintenance authorized in accordance with subpart A of this part.

(2) When a train approaches the bridge, the draw tender will initiate the bridge closing warning signal, consisting of radio calls via VHF-FM channels 13 and 16 and activation of flashing red warning lights at each end of the span. The radio calls will be broadcast at five (5) minutes prior to bridge closing and at two (2) minutes prior to bridge closing. At the end of the two-minute warning period, if there are no vessels passing beneath the bridge or there have been no requests to pass beneath the bridge then the draw will automatically close. Upon passage of the train, the draw will return to the open-to-vessel position. The warning lights will continue to flash red until the draw is completely opened.

(3) The draw shall be remotely operated by the draw tender at Norfolk Southern Railroad's bridge control center in Decatur, Alabama. Closed Circuit TVs, infrared detectors and an Automatic Identification System have been installed at the bridge. Vessels can contact the NSRR draw tender via VHF-FM channel 13 or by telephone at the number displayed on the signs posted at the bridge to request an opening of the draw when the vertical lift span is in the closed-to-vessel position.

(4) NSRR will immediately provide an on-site bridge tender if:

(i) Any component of the remote operations system fails and prevents the remote operator from being able to visually identify vessels, communicate with vessels, detect vessels immediately underneath the bridge or visually identify trains approaching the bridge.

(ii) Anytime NSRR cannot meet Federal Railway Administration (FRA) or any other government agency safety requirements.

(iii) Anytime that the NSRR procedures or equipment to close or open the bridge listed in paragraph (b)(2) of this section fail.

(iv) When weather reaches a point where the remote draw tender cannot visually identify a vessel from the remote location.

(v) At the direction of the District Commander.

[USCG-2017-0108, 85 FR 33553, June 2, 2020]