Vandals give Hancock County leaders useful information - - The News for South Mississippi

Vandals give Hancock County leaders useful information


Hancock County leaders say they hope to learn from the vandals that tampered with the steel-cable safety rails along the seawall in Bay St. Louis.

Although the search is on for responsible parties, city and county leaders say a lot can be learned from what was done.

Bay St. Louis Mayor Les Fillingame left city hall Thursday morning to survey the damage done to the steel cable barrier that spans the mile long sea-wall. It's there to prevent people from falling over the concrete seawall.

What he discovered was contrary to what he had been told earlier about the vandalism.

"None of the wires have been cut. The connections have just become unscrewed," said Fillingame.

That's good news he said, it's a problem with a relatively easy fix.

"If nothing else we can send a couple of our guys out with some couplers and reattach these things and get them re-drawn," said Filligame.

The mayor says a lot of beachgoers view the safety measure as a hindrance, restricting access to the seawall and the sand beach.

"Is it possible somebody did that to provide a little easier access for them without having to climb up and down through the wires? Probably." said Fillingame.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built the seawall in the years following Hurricane Katrina for shoreline protection. The Hancock County Board of Supervisors oversees maintenance on the sand beach.

City and county leaders say they hope to learn from what the vandals did. It lets them know where folks want access to the beach.

"What I'm saying is there should be areas in the seawall with handrails going down that the people can walk down the seawall. It's like steps to utilize our beaches, our marina, our waterfront," Steve Seymour, Hancock County Board of Supervisors.

City and county leaders plan to asked the Corps to consider that possibility.

"We need it at Carol Avenue, we need it at Ulman Avenue, we need some additional access at Washington Street and other areas along here," explained Fillingame.

City and county leaders hope to meet with Army Corps of Engineers officials in the coming days.

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