UPDATE (9:05 am) — Results from water samples taken from Monday in Perdido Bay are in from Mobile Baykeeper. The results show that there is no evidence of a sewage spill but there is evidence of an algae bloom that can cause skin and stomach irritations. They suggest that the community stay out of the water as long as the algae is present.
LILLIAN, Ala. (WKRG) — Mobile Baykeeper was back in Perdido Bay Monday, taking more water samples for testing. “We want to try to figure out for sure is this something they need to be concerned about? Is it a temporary issue and if there is a source that is causing this, where is it, what is it, how do we stop it,” says Cade Kistler, program director for the environmental group.
Results of samples taken Friday showed algae in the water and on the shore loaded with fecal matter. “There is a lot of suspicion this is related to an algae bloom. There could be other sources as well so we really wanted to dig in and look more closely,” says Kistler.
Mats of algae started showing up a couple of weeks ago and has progressively gotten worse according to resdients living along the shore. Gayle Beech has never seen anything like it. “I have lived down here a long time and this is not the way our bay is and we want our bay back and we want to find out who is responsible for this.”
Beech filed a formal complaint with the Environmental Protection Agency over the weekend prompting a response from the U.S. Coast Guard who came to see for themselves. Once it was determined the pollution is not petroleum based there was nothing else they could do. “I’m not going to stop until we find out where this is coming from,” added Beech.
In the meantime, the experts say until they know more, be careful. “Properly cooked fish I probably be okay with,” says Kistler. “I’m not going to eat sushi out of here today. In terms of swimming in this water, I would want to know more about what is going on.”
The results of these more extensive tests are expected to be available in the next 24 hours.
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