Environment Pollution in USA on October 24 2017 05:13 AM (UTC).
Sewage spills continue to cause a disgusting situation in Mobile Bay and the waterways around it. The Mobile Baykeeper said Sunday's heavy downpours caused nearly 700,000 gallons of raw sewage to escape from local sewer systems. As severe thunderstorms pounded the Gulf Coast, rising waters flooded local roads and threatened some homes. The waters also caused a massive sewage dump into Mobile Bay. The Mobile Baykeeper said about 610,000 gallons of sewage spilled over the span of a few hours. 7,200 hundred gallons of sewage were spilled in Fairhope which left residents in disgust. Fairhope native Billie Reinhart grew up in Fairhope and said she's saddened to think it's being harmed. "I have a big concern about the health issues that come along with that," said Reinhart. This situation comes on the heels of another spill in August, when a pump station failed and sent about 266,000 gallons into Fly Creek. "There are some serious issues that could come along with sewage being in places where people swim or where many people still do eat out of the bay. People used to not worry about that and what the fish were getting into," Reinhart said. Casi Callaway, Executive Director with the Mobile Baykeeper, said the problem is old infrastructure that hasn't accounted for the growth in population. "We don't have big enough pipes to carry it from our homes to the street and to the lift station. The lift stations are too small to be able to handle the kind of capacity that we have," said Callaway,"Then when it gets to the sewage treatment facility, we don't have enough tanks or storage." Callaway said the amount of bacteria in the water could have adverse effects on the waterways and the locals that use them. According to Callaway, city and county officials must do more to be able to fix the current system. "Politicians don't see it as something glitzy and shiny objects that will get taxpayers to reelect them," Callaway said, "We must invest in the pipes, in the systems and in the lift stations. We must invest in the capacity for our systems to be able to contain storms like this." Callaway said a lawsuit filed by the Mobile Baykeeper which alleges the Daphne Utilities has been under reporting sewage spills is still underway. The Mobile Baykeeper is testing to find out the bacteria levels in Fly Creek and Rock Creek in Fairhope as well as D'Olive Creek in Daphne.