Saluda sewage spill not the first of its kind

Saluda River / FILE

LEXINGTON (WACH) -- The latest sewage spill in the Saluda River is raising questions about procedures and regulations for facilities that repeatedly leak wastewater.

Earlier this week Alpine Utilities spilled more than 5,000 gallons of sewage into a creek which empties into the Saluda River.

A review of the Department of Health and Environmental Control records shows Alpine is responsible for eight other spills this year. The amounts leaked range from 15 gallons to 5,000.

According to DHEC Spokesman Thom Berry the agency has issued Alpine a new permit with tighter restrictions. While most operations are only required to report major sewage spills, Alpine must notify DHEC of any spill, no matter how small.

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Berry says DHEC takes these spills very seriously and can shut a facility down, but only in extreme cases where a company is causing imminent danger to the public.

WACH Fox News tried contacting Alpine Utility but couldn't get in touch with anyone to get a response.