Houston channel open to inbound traffic-Houston Pilots

HOUSTON, March 25 Tue Mar 25, 2014 5:53pm EDT

HOUSTON, March 25 (Reuters) - The Houston Ship Channel has re-opened for inbound ship traffic, the head of the Houston Pilots said on Tuesday.

Capt. Clint Winegar said the U.S. Coast Guard gave the pilots "a small window" to allow some inbound traffic to move into the channel during daylight hours.

The Coast Guard first allowed outbound traffic to move earlier on Tuesday to help clear out space for inbound ships.

Winegar said both inbound and outbound traffic will stop at 6 p.m. CDT and resume at 7 a.m. CDT on Wednesday.

The ship channel, a crucial waterway for oil shipments to the Houston-area refining hub, was shut on Saturday after an oil barge collided with a cargo ship, spilling about 4,000 barrels, or 168,000 gallons (636,000 liters), of residual fuel oil. (Reporting By Kristen Hays. Editing by Andre Grenon)

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