Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis says officials are working to prevent the collapse of a large wastewater pond in the Tampa Bay area.
Manatee County officials ordered 316 homes to be evacuated, a local jail, and officials have closed a portion of U.S. Highway 41.
The pond has the potential to unleash about 340 million gallons of water measuring about six metres high in just a matter of minutes causing a “catastrophic flood.”
On March 26, there were approximately 480 million gallons in the impacted NGS-South compartment. As of Sunday morning, the total quantity in the impacted compartment is approximately 306 million gallons.
State officials are working around the clock to make repairs and remove water from the compartment to prevent uncontrolled discharge into surrounding areas.
The pond consists of saltwater, wastewater and stormwater. It has elevated levels of phosphorous and nitrogen and is acidic but not toxic.