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Log Jam Blocking Boats Along Mississippi In St. Paul

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(credit: CBS) Kate Raddatz
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ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — It has been over a week and a half since a summer storm socked the Twin Cities, and clean-up crews are making the rounds.

The storm is also to blame for a big mess along the Mississippi River in St. Paul, a situation that could have an impact on some people headed to the Mississippi River this Fourth of July.

A large logjam is causing problems near Raspberry Island in downtown St. Paul. Since last week, the jam has doubled in size, and it’s blocking access to boats under the Wabasha Street Bridge.

The trees and branches ended up in the river after the storm, and that combined with high water levels and a swift current is what has people concerned.

The logjam isn’t too far from where lots of people have boats. Logs have been breaking away from the giant pile and crashing into some of them. For the nearby St. Paul Yacht club, it’s been a hit to business, especially during this big holiday week.

The jam is blocking the Wabasha Street Bridge, but the biggest problem is who is figuring out who is responsible for cleaning it up. The logs are on a national waterway, touching both private and city property.

One solution is to split the estimate $25,000 cleanup, which the St. Paul Yacht Club says it doesn’t have the money to do.

Meanwhile, the city says it’s been out every day making sure the jam doesn’t compromise the bridge integrity. So far, they say it’s not an issue.

As a note, Park Board workers in Minneapolis are now collecting tree debris left at the curb. Last month’s storm downed hundreds of trees and cut power to thousands. The city’s cleanup service is only for homeowners trying to get rid of storm-damaged branches; not contractors or people doing regular pruning.

Crews will pick up tree debris left along the street through next Friday.

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