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Fact Sheet 2009-3001

Prepared in cooperation with the South Carolina Department of Transportation

Evaluation of Structural Best Management Practices for Highway Runoff in Beaufort and Colleton Counties, South Carolina, 2005-2006

By Kevin Conlon and Celeste Journey


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As part of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program mandated in the Clean Water Act, the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) is required to address the quality of stormwater runoff from state-maintained roadways. From 2005 to 2006, the SCDOT and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) worked cooperatively in Beaufort and Colleton Counties, South Carolina (SC), to evaluate the performance of four different structural devices that served as best management practices (BMPs). These structural devices were installed to lessen the potential effects of stormwater runoff on water quality in waterways near state roads.

The purpose of this Fact Sheet is to summarize results published in the USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2008-5150. The report documents the ability of these four BMP devices to remove suspended sediment, metals, nutrients, and organics compounds in stormwater runoff. The quantity of rainfall and stormflow and quality of stormwater entering and leaving the BMPs were monitored during 12-13 storms over a 21-month period. The results provide the SCDOT with quantitative information to evaluate whether or not the BMPs effectively enhanced stormwater quality. This information can be used by the SCDOT and other State, local, and Federal agencies in the selection of appropriate BMPs for future installation.

First posted February 20, 2009

For additional information contact:
USGS South Carolina Water Science Center
Stephenson Center, Suite 129
720 Gracern Road
Columbia, SC 29210

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Conlon, Kevin, and Journey, Celeste, 2009, Evaluation of structural best management practices for highway runoff in Beaufort and Colleton Counties, South Carolina, 2005-2006: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2009-3001, 2 p. (available only online at

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