From our News Partners at WCBD-TV:
Charleston - Monday afternoon the Medical University of South Carolina issued a statement saying a a malfunctioning generator fuel pump atop the Institute of Psychiatry was the source of the diesel fuel leak into Charleston Harbor during the weekend.
The rooftop generator apparently failed to shut off and leaked diesel fuel into a storm drain which emptied eventually into Charleston Harbor. Employees of MUSC¹s physical plant turned off the generator when the leak was discovered during regular maintenance rounds and the university notified the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control of the incident immediately.
University officials are working to determine the cause of the generator malfunction and determine how much fuel was leaked.
Saturday the Coast Guard responded to pools of thick, purple diesel-type product and sheens in the water at Bristol, Ashley River, and Charleston City Marinas.
A boater reported the pollution to Coast Guardsmen in the Sector Charleston command center at 6:20 p.m. Saturday April 19. Additional reports from other boaters followed.
The Coast Guard federalized the response, using the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund, to ensure swift and appropriate action was taken to mitigate environmental impact. The Coast Guard stated the product appeared to be pooling in the marinas’ boat slips and does not appear to be spreading outside of the marinas' basins with only a light sheen observed in the Ashley River.
The Charleston City Marina dock master deployed boom in an attempt to contain the product.
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