Sewage spill impacts downtown businesses - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Sewage spill impacts downtown businesses

The second sewage spill comes just weeks after the first one. (Source: WALB) The second sewage spill comes just weeks after the first one. (Source: WALB)
The smell from the sewage may be bad enough to keep some people away from the river. (Source: WALB) The smell from the sewage may be bad enough to keep some people away from the river. (Source: WALB)
Kayak and outfitter businesses may be the worst off after the spill. (Source: WALB) Kayak and outfitter businesses may be the worst off after the spill. (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

We are not sure if workers will return to the Flint River to continue clean up efforts after a second sewage spill into the waterway. 

Jacobs, the company responsible for the pumps, said in a statement they hope to bring in a third-party source in to assess the damage. 

Gordon Rogers, the Flint Riverkeeper, said they already know the effects the second spill will have. 

A broken pump caused 90,000 gallons of sewage to spill into the Flint River back in May. Now after just a few weeks, the city of Albany is seeing a second sewage spill. 

"It's aesthetically displeasing in terms of smell," said Rogers. 

And this smell is bad enough to keep people off of the river and out of certain downtown businesses. 

"When the park is less attractive because of these spills, then that translates into less traffic for downtown businesses at some level," Rogers said.

Especially for those businesses who rely on the water to make money. 

"The fact is that it's affecting their revenue stream because people are becoming wary of getting on the river and the kayak outfitters themselves are becoming wary of getting on the river," said Rogers.

The second spill comes just a week after Kayak Attack announced they would no longer be opening a store in the downtown area because of the first sewage spill. Now Rogers said kayak businesses may be seeing even more revenue loss now. 

"That's not healthy and it's not good for outfitters' revenues," Rogers said.

He said even after the river is cleaned, it will be hard to make people forget about the sewage that was in it. 

"There's a longer-term problem, and that is that we can't afford to have Albany and the river running through Albany, to get a reputation for nasty water. We just can't do that," said Rogers.

Other downtown businesses told WALB News 10 say the spill has not affected their revenue so far.

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