A stinky situation

Smelly standing water and dead fish created unpleasant conditions in Pecan Creek Monday, but City of Gainesville officials are working at the site just south of the Garnett Street bridge after at least one concerned citizen alerted them to a possible environmental health situation.

The hot summer months can bring standing water in Pecan Creek and the potential for environmental and health complications and concerns.

This week the City of Gainesville has been checking out and working on a pool of standing water on the south side of the Garnett Street bridge after at least one concerned citizen alerted the city that there might be a problem with the water.

Gainesville City Manager Barry Sullivan said he had been informed about the water by City of Gainesville Public Services Director Ron Sellman and that water samples are being checked and show that the water is not hazardous or contaminated with sewage.

Sullivan said the dead fish in the standing section of water were probably caused by carp swimming upriver and then being caught in that section of the creek and when the water receded, the fish died when the oxygen was depleted, causing the horrible smell.

“We are looking into the matter,” Sullivan said.

City of Gainesville Public Services Utility Field Supervisor Carlos Fabrow confirmed they checked out the area Monday. Fabrow said they checked and tested the water upstream and downstream from the Garnett Street bridge and there is no sign of sewage in the spot, just stagnant water.

Fabrow said they also went to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) website as a resource on how to handle and treat the stagnant water, but there isn’t much you can do. “Fish kill” makes the situation worse, he said, when the oxygen is depleted and the fish caught in the section of the creek die. Rain water would help at this point, Fabrow said.

City of Gainesville Community Services Director John Noblitt confirmed they have checked the water.

Noblitt said the water in that spot has been treated with mosquito repellent to prevent a mosquito infestation from starting there.

Sellman said city officals have removed dead fish from the area.

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