Mud from coal ash pit accidentally dumped into Waccamaw River, report says

Mud from coal ash pit accidentally dumped into Waccamaw River, report says
Santee Cooper has been working to protect ash ponds at the Grainger site. (Source: Santee Cooper)

CONWAY, SC (WMBF) – Santee Cooper officials revealed that mud from a coal ash pit was accidentally dumped into Waccamaw River, according to a Post and Courier report.

A line of sludge was discovered by employees the morning of Jan. 30 at the site of the former coal-fired Grainger Generating Station in Conway.

The spokeswoman for Santee Cooper told the Post and Courier that employees found that a pump sucked out water in a section of pond No. 2 and started dredging up the sediment underneath. The state-run utility company believes about a dumpster’s worth of ash and soil ended up in the river.

The pumps are checked every night by employees, but for some reason, that pump was not monitored, according to the Post and Courier.

The utility has increased its nighttime monitoring of pumps and tests show that toxic materials in coal ash, like arsenic, lead and mercury, have not shown up in the Waccamaw River.

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