Roving Reporter | "Rising Tide Brings Ecological Hazards" by Vicki Totten

A drive down Water Street

You may have noticed that Rockport is still in the middle of trying to recover from a hurricane. Those piles of debris everywhere are hard to miss. While those piles of debris represent people's homes, businesses, dreams, and blood, sweat and tears; they also now represent ecological hazards for the Aransas Bay area.

One of many debris piles next to the water.

Shell Ridge area.

One way only during high tide.

The water is so high on portions of Water Street, that car traffic is restricted on parts of it. A bike ride down it and over to Shell Ridge, however, revealed that the recent rains accompanied by higher than normal tides, threaten to take some of those piles of debris out to sea.

Unfortunately, many people stacked their ruined lumber with rusting nails, appliances, and furnishings on the side of Water Street closest to the water. A further trip down Shell Ridge revealed a similar pattern. Now when you look out at the bay, it is not unusual to see unidentifiable pieces of wood popping up out of the water. Those random pieces of debris will be representing challenges to boaters and swimmers for many years to come, in addition to creating ecological hazards that will be difficult to identify, since those piles of debris sometimes included items not intended for the bay.

Unidentified debris buried near the beach.

Hopefully the trucks will make their way to those streets closest to the bay soon, or else the tides will begin to go down before much else gets tossed into the water.

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