2 Lowcountry towns struggle to find access to clean water

CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) – Earlier this week Charleston County brought a water tank in McClellanville and South Santee to supply neighbors with clean drinking water.

This news comes after the Department of Health and Environmental Control shut off the water. DEHC now requires that the water is tested daily, as opposed to it only being tested once a week in the past. Mount Pleasant Water Works provides the testing, but their general manager, Clay Duffy says the daily tests became too expensive.

“Obviously this additional time spent checking on these stations, creating an additional cost to Mount Pleasant waterworks far beyond the cost-effective cost of benefit,” he said.

This shut down has neighbors angry.

“We should have water readily available at all times, people shouldn’t have to go down the street to get clean water,” said McClellanville resident Khalil Blake.

Some neighbors are even saying that the water testing should be no excuse to limit the access of clean drinking water.

“We should have people testing water at all times. it’s a small community it should be easy to handle,” Blake said.

During this temporary shut off, Charleston County has brought in a water buffalo to provide clean drinking water. The water buffalo will be set up at Awendaw Fire Station 4. Some neighbors say that people should be thankful for this temporary fix.

“I think it’s always good to have a backup plan for when things go wrong, but I mean the water buffalo at least that’s something,” said Sally Racine, McClellanville neighbor.

It is unclear when the water distribution stations will reopen. County officials are awaiting an employee to complete their certification in order to test the water daily. The water tank will be available every day between 9 a.m and 5 p.m.

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