Why didn't the floating Miss. casinos simply get towed out of the hurricane's way?

Per the linked story below about the damaged casinos. They’re essentially floating on barges. Why not just hire a tug to pull you a couple of hundred miles out of the way?

Mississippi to let casinos move onto dry land - Governor to sign bill to allow gambling a short distance from shore

Because, although they float, they are not seaworthy :smack: :stuck_out_tongue: :stuck_out_tongue:

You’re kidding … right?

That’s kinda like asking why trailer parks don’t just uproot and move when a tornado comes. They’re only mobile for getting into place, after that they can’t move anymore.

Being able to float is a very far cry from being “seaworthy.” The casinos would probably not have been very stable in any kind of sea, even if it there would have been enough time to tow them entirely out of the storm’s path. Remember, the exact location of landfall wasn’t known until a short time before it happened.

Thanks for responses.

I imagined they could move, because I see huge barges getting towed at a pretty good clip around the Chesapeake Bay all the time. Theroreticaly it should be considerably less trouble to cast off a barge than uproot a trailer home.

A lot of those casinos were also only nominally on navigable waters. There might be a small canal built to where the barge is to be located so there is not a channel wide enough for the casino to be towed to.

Remember that when Rita for instance was still 4 or 5 days out, about the time the towing would need to commence, the expected range of landfall where it was expected to hit included the entire coastline of Texas.

Whichever way you go, it’s a crap shoot.

In most cases, these casinos are only ‘floating’ by the slimmest possible legally-acceptable technicality. I believe several of them are on custom-built barges that float in custom-built concrete bays, designed to have exactly 3 inches or so of water clearance at every point.
The good news is that they’re not particularly more vulnerable than a building sitting on land, as they can’t really float away during a hurricane, but they certainly can’t be moved easily.

Hopefully, the physically disasterous results caused by forcing casinos offshore to circumvent some antiquarian gaming laws will result in reform of the code. I mean you can perform a simple reform of the language or you can continue to lose needed tax dollars and spend millions fixing the flawed mechanism in place every time a hurricane hits. The current system is illogical and just dumb.

If you’re going to let them be there then let them be there. Don’t turn them into a dedgum battering ram.