"Tomorrow morning I’ll be traveling to Manatee County ... to meet with local officials regarding Piney Point. All residents impacted should heed local evacuation orders," DeSantis wrote on Twitter on Saturday night.
Earlier in the day, the governor announced a state of emergency after a break was detected in the wall of a large pond at the Piney Point plant.
Due to a possible breach of mixed saltwater from the south reservoir at the Piney Point facility, I have declared a State of Emergency for Manatee County to ensure resources are allocated for necessary response & recovery.— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) April 3, 2021
The pond has already discharged over 25 million gallons of sewage into Port Manatee, but the phosphogypsum stacks could collapse further, which could cause major flooding of nearby areas and spilling into the bay.
Manatee County Commission Chairman Vanessa Baugh said in a Saturday statement that a complete evacuation of the Piney Point reservoir site and surrounding areas had been ordered.