Nassau River still not entirely clean

Some debris still remains after 10 days

Author: Ashley Harding, General assignment reporter, aharding@wjxt.com
Nicholas Jones, Associate producer, njones@wjxt.com
Published On: Dec 31 2013 07:01:03 PM EST   Updated On: Dec 31 2013 08:17:14 PM EST
Nassau River after cleanup
YULEE, Fla. -

Residents are still anxious to have their river cleaned up, and Florida Fish and Wildlife says crews are doing their best to get it done.

It's been a join effort between the Department of Environmental Protection and FWC. They said crews should be out Wednesday cleaning it as well, and hope to have it done by then.

The accident happened last week when a truck overturned on I-95 in Nassau County, spilling its cargo -- cardboard boxes, plastic containers and bags of lettuce into the river. 

Eddie Bennett has lived in his home on the Nassau River for two years. He said the debris is much worse further up the river.

"I've talked to my neighbors that have been out. Really where I live here, which is just almost to the entrance of Boggy Creek -- it's not nearly as bad as it is going north of the river," said Bennett.

Bennett is happy that the area where the accident happened was cleaned up, but wishes there had been a faster response, and a more thorough job had been done.

Crash leaves trash in river

"When it's the individual pieces, it doesn't really bother me that much," said Bennett. "But when you see the cardboard, and the wooden crates, and the plastic bags full of all of this, it's real disappointing."

Officials said crews were out on the river over the weekend and again Monday cleaning up. Karen Parker with FWC said the tide may have played a role in why some items were missed, and the holiday season may have impacted the response time. 

"A lot of people were on vacation, just like a lot of other agencies," said Parker. "Our officers were notified of the complaints on the 23rd, which is basically right before Christmas. And Even though my guys were on it, it was kind of difficult getting hold of some of the key players."

Florida Fish and Wildlife said after the mess is cleaned up they will continue to monitor the river, and if people see any more problems, they're welcome to reach out.