Understanding Water Quality
DHEC is working to ensure high quality swimmable and fishable water in South Carolina. However, sometimes those uses are not supported based on bacteria concentrations or contaminants affecting fish, so DHEC issues advisories for recreation and fish consumption.
The South Carolina Freshwater Swimming Advisories list popular waterbodies with swimming advisories, letting you know that swimming there may make you sick.
DHEC's Beach Monitoring Program routinely collects water samples at over 120 locations on South Carolina’s beaches. If high numbers of bacteria (Enterococcus) are found, an advisory is issued for that portion of beach advising you NOT to swim in that area while signs are posted.
Finally, the South Carolina Fish Consumption Advisory Program issues fish consumption advisories where contaminated fish are found. The advisories tell you the right amounts and types of fish to eat from South Carolina waters.
Collecting fish tissue samples
Swimming advisory sign
Bureau of Water . Phone: (803) 898-4300 . Fax: (803) 898-3795 . Contact Us