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Bringloe, Thomas The Glosten Associates Inc., Seattle, Washington.
- Physical constraints
- Resistance and propulsion
- Tug–barge connections
- Regulatory environment
- Structural design codes
- Economic influences
- Additional Reading
The U.S. tug and barge fleet has grown to nearly 4000 modern tugboats and towboats and more than 27,000 barges. The industry moves over 800 million tons (725 million metric tons) of raw materials and finished goods each year. A recent study by the Texas Transportation Institute and Texas A&M University compared inland waterway capacity to other transport modes (truck and rail) and noted that the inland waterway alone accounts for “about 624 million tons of waterborne cargo transit … a volume equal to about 14% of all intercity freight. This commerce has an overall value of about $70 billion, substantially contributing to America's economic strength.” The study concluded that inland waterways “have lots of unused capacity—capacity which could be used to relieve growing transportation congestion, with lesser impacts on air quality, public safety and the environment than the other modes.”
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