DHEC lifts swimming advisory for Saluda River

July 8, 2016

COLUMBIA, SC – The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control has lifted the swimming advisory that has been in place for the Saluda River at Saluda Shoals Park in Columbia since Jun 21, 2016. As a result, the temporary advisory signs are being removed.

“We have been performing daily sampling along the section of river that was impacted by improperly treated wastewater, along with the effluent being discharged from the facility, and found that bacteria levels have returned to consistently satisfactory levels,” said David Baize, chief of DHEC’s Bureau of Water.

On June 21, DHEC sampling revealed bacteria levels higher than normal being discharged from the Carolina Water Service Friarsgate Plant (CWS) into the Saluda River near Saluda Shoals.

Operational deficiencies were identified at the plant, and DHEC directed CWS to immediately correct the problem. DHEC personnel have been monitoring their progress, and sampled water throughout the holiday weekend to ensure that the corrective actions at the plant were being consistently effective and not impacting water quality.

DHEC will continue to provide regulatory oversight of further long-term corrective actions at the CWS Friarsgate facility, and will continue sampling of the effluent being discharged to ensure compliance with the facility’s permit.

DHEC has been reviewing the available information to determine what violations may have occurred and will take appropriate enforcement action.