DNR handling fireworks litter complaints

  • Thursday, July 17, 2014

This photo of the Murrells Inlet fireworks was submitted by Austin Bond.

The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources will be handling litter complaints stemming from the Marshwalk restaurant group’s Monday night fireworks display over Murrells Inlet.

That’s the word from Carter Weaver, Georgetown County’s assistant sheriff.

“We are asking that the DNR take the front seat, to handle the litter issue,” Weaver said. “If there is a noise complaint, that would be our department.”

A vocal group of Inlet residents have raised the litter issue after the Marshwalk restaurants reinstituted Monday Night Lights, a 10-minute fireworks show that is held weekly.

The fireworks are shot from a barge in the Inlet, unlike last year, when the pyrotechnics went off from the Marsh Walk.

The residents had pointed out that debris from the weekly shows was being left in the Inlet and did not decompose, potentially posing a hazard to fish, oysters and wildlife.

Weaver said that enforcement over the water rests with the state, not the sheriff’s department.

On July 15, restaurant employees were out in the Inlet picking up residue left over from the July 14 event.

Al Hitchcock said that as far as he knew, no citations were issued for the July 14 fireworks display.

“We were really regulated,” said Hitchcock, managing partner of Drunken Jack’s.

He said that there were representatives from the Department of Natural Resources, the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Department, the state Fire Marshal’s Office and the Murrells Inlet Garden City Fire Department.

Hitchcock added that the restaurant workers were picking up trash that had nothing to do with the fireworks. “We’ve got bottles, cans, all sorts of items,” he said.

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