Why is this South Carolina creek running red?


UNION, S.C. (WSPA) – A concerning morning for some people living in the Bermuda Run neighborhood in Union. People living near a creek there told 7 News, they woke up to find it tainted red.

The talk of the town Thursday in Union.

“Today at work, someone showed me a picture of it on Facebook,” said Union County Resident, Gerald Eves.

Gerald Eves told us, he thought that picture of the creek flowing red was a joke.

“I wanted to ride by here and see, it’s not a sham,” Eves said.

People living nearby told 7 News, when they saw the color change, they were concerned about what it means for wildlife.

A handful of them said they contacted the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Union county’s Director of Emergency Management, Rob Fraim contacted the water treatment plant in town since it’s not far from the creek.

“I knew it probably wasn’t going to be hazardous and that’s exactly what DHEC said,” Union county’s Director of Emergency Management, Rob Fraim told us.

People with the state health department made their way to the creek to investigate. They determined there was a break in a wastewater line running from a nearby plant that caused the red water. They also said that line has now been repaired.

The red isn’t believed to be permanent or dangerous.

You can find a full statement from SCDHEC on the matter here:

“DHEC staff responded to the scene, and we have spoken with Union County Emergency Management Division (EMD), the City of Union, and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). A break in an effluent line appears to have been the cause of the red water, and the line break has reportedly been repaired. For details, please contact Union County EMD.

DHEC staff observed no impacted wildlife or plants. At this time, there is no known threat to human health or the environment.”

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