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Published: Wednesday, 10/19/2011

Army Corps reduces power on electric Asian carp barrier

Previous high setting might interfere with railroad


TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — Authorities are reducing power on an electric barrier designed to prevent Asian carp from reaching the Great Lakes, barely a week after turning up the juice to make the device more effective.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Wednesday test results suggest the higher setting might be interfering with a crossing gate and operating signals for a railroad near the electric barrier, located 37 miles by water from Chicago. The Corps says that could cause safety problems for trains.

The Corps says it cut power from 2.3 volts back to 2 volts, the setting before it was boosted Oct. 11.

The barrier emits electric pulses in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal to prevent Asian carp and other fish from migrating between the Great Lakes and Mississippi River watersheds.

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