Due to a repair work on Charleston Water System’s supply line to Sullivan’s Island and Isle of Palms, a temporary restriction on outdoor watering is in place for both islands until the work is complete.
Charleston Water System provides drinking water to Sullivan's Island and supplements the Isle of Palms' supply through a 20-inch water main that crosses the Charleston Harbor, from James Island to Sullivan's Island.
Charleston Water System discovered a leak on this pipe just offshore of Fort Johnson Wednesday evening. The Isle of Palms is using its reverse osmosis plant and standby well to serve its customers and Sullivan's Island until repairs are complete.
The three utilities are working closely with the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) while the repairs are being made. The water is safe to drink and meets SCDHEC's public health requirements, though it may taste and feel different due to a change in the source of the water.
To ensure there is enough water to meet summertime demands and provide fire protection, both islands have issued temporary restrictions on outdoor watering and are turning off dedicated irrigation meters. Residents are also encouraged to voluntarily conserve water used indoors.
"We have enough water to supply both islands, but to be on the safe side, we're asking residents to be mindful of how much water they're using until Charleston Water System completes its repairs," said Kristen Champagne, General Manager of the Isle of Palms Water and Sewer Commission.
"This is a temporary situation and our water supply should be back to normal as soon as Charleston Water System completes the repair," said Andy Benke, Sullivan's Island Town Administrator.
It’s unknown at this time how long the pipe repair will take. Charleston Water System will provide updates as more information becomes available.
"We want to thank both the Isle of Palms and Sullivan's Island for working with us to arrange an alternate supply while we get this pipeline repaired," said Kin Hill, Charleston Water System Chief Executive Officer. "The Isle of Palms has really come to the rescue in this situation and the cooperation among the three agencies has helped minimize the impact to all island residents."
The cause of the leak is unknown at this time. The water main was installed in 1995.
Jenny Craft, Communications Manager