SALLY’S IMPACT: Water being pushed out of Mobile Bay, river flooding and sewage spills

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MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Mobile Bay and many rivers were on the west side of Hurricane Sally which brought strong northerly winds. The result was water being pushed out of these rivers and Mobile Bay. There were even reports of bass washing up in Daphne. Bass are freshwater fish.

Casi Calloway with Mobile Baykeeper said, “So when you rushed all of that water out of the bay, you brought fish with it that don’t belong down here! So the salt water…killed them… right away.” When the water rushed back in, the saltwater pushed farther north than it should be, killing grasses, trees, and other wildlife that are only used to freshwater.

With river flooding, typically the litter, oil, gas, fertilizer and other things on the ground trickle into our waterways little by little. But when the rivers flood, all of this happens at one time.

Calloway adds, “So that massive flush has a major water quality impact. Every chemical you can imagine from lawns and fertilizers and then very, very importantly… all of the sewage.”

Speaking of sewage, rain and floodwaters are often too much for our system which causes sewage spills. Calloway explains, “When you’ve got water coming up, it is infiltrating lines, septic tanks, manholes, lift stations….every aspect of a sewage treatment facility.” Unfortunately, this sewage ends up in our waterways.

While Sally’s winds and rains are gone, the storm’s environmental impact will be felt for a long time.

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