The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks small chamber will be closed to marine traffic next week from noon on Monday, March 14, through 5 p.m., on Friday, March 25.
Crews will conduct maintenance and safety inspections during the small chamber closure. Foot traffic will not be affected and the large lock will continue around-the-clock operations for vessels. Lock wall staff will attempt to get commercial traffic through as quickly as possible.
All pleasure boats will use the large lock and boaters should be prepared with appropriate equipment and crew. Large lock requirements include long lines and fenders on board. Current locking through information is available online. Mariners may experience delays, depending on passage demand.
Most machinery and equipment, including the gates and valves, are original to the 99-year-old facility. The annual closure gives dam safety experts and maintenance staff the chance to dry out the chambers for thorough inspections and to make necessary repairs.
According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, this routine maintenance is important to project safety and continued operation as the locks approach their 100-year anniversary.