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  • Flat Deck – A barge on which the deck stowage is one large flat surface, upon which cargo rests and is secured to.
  • Hopper / Split Hopper – A barge with one large or many smaller compartments that are partially below the edge of the barge. Hoppers can be used to store bulk loose items such as grains, sand or ore. Many hoppers can be covered with tarp or hard metal lids to protect contents, and some can even store additional cargo on top of the hopper compartments. Depending on the cargo, hopper/split barges can be loaded by hand or specialized MHE. 
  • Tanker Barge - A barge designed to carry liquids or compressed gasses. Tanker barges requires specialized maintenance, and will only be used if the sending and receiving ports have the proper equipment to load and offload. 

Barge movement is likely the cheapest mode of moving cargo inland into a country, however it has limitations. Barging operations are extremely slow; the loading and offloading process can take days or weeks depending on the load type and the journey itself can take weeks to accomplish. Barges are also further limited by the ability to safely moor and offload at the point of delivery. Barges themselves can be impacted by seasonal changes to the riverway, making areas impassable for periods of time.

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