DHEC: Sewage spill closes part of Intracoastal Waterway

CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCIV) - The Department of Health and Environmental Control closed shellfish harvesting beds in parts of Charleston County on Wednesday after a sewage spill at Sullivan's Island Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Plant officials told DHEC that 101,000 gallons of sewage spilled.

"This closure affects portions of the waterway from the Ben Sawyer Bridge northeast to the confluence of Conch Creek," said Mike Pearson, manager of DHEC's Shellfish Sanitation Section. "This area includes all of State Shellfish Ground S217.

The closure is only temporary, officials said, adding that it's only due to the elevated levels of bacteria currently in the water as a result of the spill.

"The affected areas will reopen once water quality data indicate the bacteria levels are acceptable for shellfish harvesting," DHEC officials said.{}

For more information on shellfish harvesting areas in Charleston County, call DHEC's Region 7 Environmental Quality Control office at (843) 953-0160.

For information on Georgetown and Horry counties' shellfish harvesting areas, call DHEC's Region 6 EQC office at (843) 238-4378.

And for more information on clam and oyster harvesting areas in Beaufort County, call DHEC's Region 8 Environmental Quality Control office at (843) 846-1030.