The river system in the eastern and central part of the United States are still vitally important for shipping. The Mississippi River is one of the world’s great navigable rivers, and it and its tributaries form the fourth largest river systems in the world. In fact a new railroad bridge has just begun construction over the Mississippi in Iowa to allow for an increased flow of barge traffic. The bridge opens 300 times a day to allow for river traffic. The western river system is used more for irrigation and water supply, and are basically unfit for navigation.
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