Hancock County marshes affected by oil - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Hancock County marshes affected by oil


By Jessica Bowman – email

WAVELAND, MS (WLOX) - Oil is reaching marshes in Hancock County. Officials said this could potentially be lethal for wildlife there. Crews were hard at work placing different types of booms in the marsh areas to try and stop the oil from going any farther than it already is.

Eric Allen works for U.S. Environmental's. The metal rods he is pounding into the marsh are there for one reason.

Allen said, "That's to hold the snare in place when the currents change and the tides go in and out. It kind of keeps it where it's supposed to be."

Several different types of snare or booms were being put in the out falls. That's the area where water from the Sound flows directly into the marshes.

"You can see the pom pom booms, you can see the absorbent booms and out here on the front of the out fall you can see the hard boom," said Brian Adam.

Emergency Operation Director Brian Adam said right now there are only two out falls along Beach Boulevard in Waveland that are noticeably affected with oil.

Adam said, "It's not a whole lot, it's enough to scare you because we have a lot of marsh area and a lot of bayous back here, and if it gets in, it could ecologically ruin a lot of things, grass, wildlife, crabs, shrimp you name it any type of wildlife that lives back here."

For now, the gummy gobs have only extended about 30 or 40 yards into the marshes, but, protective measures extend farther than that.

Allen said, "I put on these waders and head back there as far back as we need to go usually 200 feet."

Once that boom is stretched completely out it is checked on once again.

"We check them every day and change them out as we need to add more and try to keep it out of the marshes as much as possible," said Allen.

Adam said experts are working on some things that can hopefully clean what is in the marshes right now, out. According to Adam fencing is also being stretched across land areas to protect the marshes if the water rises to the road again.

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