• Island of debris stuck on Rome river


    FLOYD COUNTY, Ga. - A downtown improvement has now become a public eyesore.

    The bridge over the Oostanaula River is part of a great walking trail being built in Rome. Below it, the public dock.

    It was all beautiful until the water came up last Saturday. Now, a huge island of debris is building up behind the bridge and dock.

    Rome's Public Services Manager Kirk Milam said when the river is low a point of the dock deflects oncoming limbs. But the river didn't stay low.

    "The river has risen and has brought a lot of debris down with the river, just as a natural part of the way the river operates," Milam said.

    There are entire trees jammed in the crossways, holding back tons of floating flotsam. There are also thousands of plastic bottles and lots of soccer balls.

    "I would not have guessed that a soccer ball would be in a river," said resident Hanna Reeves.

    "Anything that will float (and) comes down the river is out there right now," Milam said.

    The contractor that built the dock is now taking it out.

    "It's a great idea. It just didn't work out too good," contractor Jerry Ledford said. "It's going to cost a bunch of money, yeah."

    "It's a cost the city will have to bear," Milam said.

    They'll have to take the dock to dry storage and try to figure out a new way to use it. Meanwhile, work continues on the park and walking trail.

    "It's going to look good whenever they get it finished," Ledford said.

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