Report Chemical Spills, Oil spills, Fish Kills
If you suspect or are aware of or witness any release of pollutants into the environment in South Carolina, please notify DHEC's Emergency Response Section (ERS). We will respond verbally to all notifications from the public that involve situations such as:
- Dumping, spills and releases of hazardous substances, including but not limited to oil and petroleum products, chemicals, hazardous waste, waste oil, pesticides, and other pollutants
- Fish kills. We also field pfiesteria-related calls.
For First Responders
If you are with a local response organization (police, fire, EMS), you're not required to report oil or hazardous material releases to DHEC (unless you are the spiller/responsible party).
However, as first responders, you are usually the first ones to discover an oil or HAZMAT incident, and you can help reduce response time for DHEC Emergency Response staff by notifying us right away.
Should you need chemical and/or technical assistance during a HAZMAT or oil spill incident, please feel free to call our toll-free 24-hour emergency reporting number - 1 (888) 481-0125. Our Emergency Response staff can offer assistance via telephone or at the scene of the incident, depending on circumstances.
Authority and Qualifications
Our regulatory authority over the responsible party means that we can make sure the spiller/polluter is identified and responds appropriately to the spill/release and follows through with an appropriate cleanup. We work with the spiller (responsible party) and offer guidance and oversight to make sure the cleanup equipment, manpower and cleanup capability are adequate and appropriate to the situation.
Our Emergency Response Section staff members:
- Have many hours of specialized training in oil and hazardous materials emergency response/remediation
- Have been trained in the Incident Command System and operate within a unified command structure that is consistent with the National Incident Management System . We operate within the guidelines and procedures as outlined in the Emergency Response Program Procedures Manual, The State of South Carolina Contingency Plan for Spills and Releases of Oil & Hazardous Substances, and the State Emergency Operations Plan .
- Are part of the Federal Regional Response Team that enforces the Federal Clean Water Act
- Work with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to implement the National Contingency Plan and the Area Plan
- Cooperate with the U.S. Coast Guard to implement the National Contingency Plan and Area Plans.