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      West Columbia Police to ticket violators on Congaree River

      WEST COLUMBIA (WACH) -- The West Columbia Police Department is making its presence known on the Congaree River.

      We are not going to come to the same spot, says Sgt. Brandon Field, we are going to be all over.

      Sgt. Field is one of a group of officers who will patrol the waterway, which is a popular destination for those seeking fun and relief from the heat.

      In recent months, the Congaree has also become a problem area, according to West Columbia Police Chief Dennis Tyndall.

      We have noticed a large population of underage people that are coming down drinking. As opposed to dumping out their cans and bottles, they just sink them so they won't get in trouble, Chief Tyndall states.

      Tyndall adds he doesn't want to discourage people from floating or boating along the river, but he says those who do need to abide by the law.

      The fine for underage drinking and littering can cost violators more than $1,000 and up to 30 days in jail.

      Do you think the added patrol will help keep the Congaree safe or is drinking on the river not a big deal?