“Due to a possible mixed saltwater leak from the Piney Point Plant South Reservoir, I declared a state of emergency in Manatee County to ensure that resources for response and recovery are allocated,” DeSantis said.
According to the Bradenton Herald, public officials declared the imminent collapse of one of the reservoirs that contains hundreds of millions of gallons of contaminated water, which if collapsed could generate serious flooding in the area.
“Evacuate the area NOW. The collapse of the Piney Point deposit is imminent. Leave the area IMMEDIATELY,” reads the public safety alert issued by the county.
Experts from the Florida Department of the Environment, together with HRK Holdings, the company responsible for the site, are working at full speed making controlled discharges of 22,000 gallons of contaminated water per minute to Tampa Bay, in order not to break the deposit of liquid from the plant, which had cracked in recent days.
The discharges themselves already worry environmentalists, who, according to the Bradenton Herald, fear that the waters containing ammonia, phosphorus and nitrogen, will create a red tide development in the area.
Manatee County Commissioner Misty Servia posted on her Facebook account a video with one of the points where 11,000 gallons of liquid are being discharged per minute.
There are two other deposits of the liquid at the plant, but authorities do not believe they are leaking.
The Florida Highway Patrol it also announced on Saturday the closure of roads from US-41 to 113th Street, east of Manatee County, as well as College Avenue, in Hillsborough County.
For his part, Rick Scot, Senator from Florida, posted a tweet in which you indicate that you are closely monitoring the situation and that you will work to secure any federal aid that the state or local officials deem necessary.
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