Harrison County resident says boats are eroding his property - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Harrison County resident says boats are eroding his property

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -

By Jessica Bowman – email

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - All that new traffic in the inland waterways is not a welcome sight to some Harrison County residents. One man who lives along the Wolf River said there is no one patrolling those waters and all the boats travelling at high speeds are causing damage to his property.

Robert Arnold said, "This whole area through here should be idle only."

Robert Albert's property is on the Wolfe River. He said because boats are moving through the narrow area at a high speed it's causing damage to the banks.

"It's eroding at a pretty rapid rate," said Robert Albert.

Albert's neighbor, Lewis Page, has lived just across the river for 14 years. He said since recreational boats have not been able to go into the sound, his property is getting smaller every time a boat passes by.

Lewis Page said, "There's been more boat traffic, and they're not going by the rules and the regulations they're supposed to. Everything's falling down into the river from people hauling boogie through here leaving three, four foot wakes."

Lewis said two weeks ago before these high wakes started occurring the wooden steps that connect the sand bar and the deck was covered in sand.

As he walked around looking at the erosion, he points out exactly how tall the sand used to be and then points to parts of the tree he has never seen.

Page said, "You can see the root system where it's actually eating the bank out. I'm going to have the river almost up to my house."

For years, Lewis said boats and other water crafts have traveled up and down the river, but never the way they are now.

"Before all of this I used to see the DMR and Sheriff's Department out here patrolling, but since this oil thing I haven't seem them at all," said Page.

Both neighbors are boaters themselves and said they realize the traffic on Wolfe River will increase, but not obeying the rules of the water could be disastrous.

We contacted the Department of Marine Resources, officials there said since the oil spill they have teamed up with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks to get more marine enforcement on the bayous and rivers.

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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