"Priority commercial traffic" is being allowed through, while other boats are still being kept away.
"The cleanup operations progress is to the point that there is minimal danger of contamination to the commercial maritime traffic and allowing limited transit during daylight hours," said Coast Guard Capt. Brian Penoyer. "This is an important accomplishment for every person working this response."
Dozens of other ships are still waiting to pass.
Authorities say it could be two to three days before the channel is fully opened.
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