James R. Barker departs Sturgeon Bay, Roger Blough due

The 1,000 footer James R. Barker departed winter layup in Sturgeon Bay this weekend and headed to Escanaba to load her first cargo of the season. She and her fleetmate Lee A. Tregurtha both had new exhaust gas scrubbers installed over the winter, which will produce cleaner emissions from the vessels. The Tregurtha is expected to depart next weekend, and she too will begin service for the 2016 season. Meanwhile, the Roger Blough, being assisted by the tug Candace Elise, was northeast of Washington Island on Sunday evening, headed for Sturgeon Bay. The Blough ran aground near Gros Cap Reef in Whitefish Bay on May 27, and was freed last week. She has been anchored in Waiska Bay since June 4, and on Saturday she passed downbound through the Soo Locks and the St. Marys River. Once she arrives in Sturgeon Bay, she will most likely enter drydock for a complete inspection and repairs.

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