Emergency response to Presidential Order to maintain the 9-foot-wide navigation channel in the Mississippi River near Thebes, Illinois.

Low water conditions created a crisis for the St. Louis Corps of Engineers District between miles 39 to 47 of the Mississippi River. The Corps issued Durocher Marine a “letter contract” and ordered us to proceed to the work as quickly as possible. We mobilized a fleet of equipment to the site and prepared to begin work. Within our 10 day mobilization, our managers compiled the necessary submittals to legally perform the work for the Corps. The work consisted of removing a total of 136 cubic yards of unspecified rock removal from over 200 locations spread across 33 acres of the river. The work included drilling and blasting many high spots or pinnacles that were undiggable with our excavators. It also included sediment removal and large boulder extraction from the river. All materials were disposed within the confines of the river in deep areas. Commercial Traffic was allowed through our work zone from 10 pm to 6 am.


The work was initiated under duress. We responded in a very timely manner to meet the Corps’ fast paced schedule. Our crews worked 24/7 throughout the project through winter conditions. All work efforts were performed without incident including all drilling and blasting activities. We worked seamlessly with all agencies and interested parties involved in the project. We met all our deadlines and completed the work while working under immense public attention. The project resulted in Navigational and Economic Benefits to the cargo industry.

  • Project Owner:
    United States Corps of Engineers, St. Louis District, Jackson, Missouri Office
  • Location:
    Thebes, IL