S.C. State Fair officials say they are working with the state Department of Health and Environmental Control to ensure that water is safe, with the Columbia area still under a boil water advisory.
A supply of distilled water has been brought in for vendors to use to prepare food and to clean up, and DHEC “will conduct random, unannounced inspections” to ensure vendors are complying with clean water measures, DHEC spokesman Robert Yanity said in an email Tuesday.
“DHEC is working with management at the State Fair to ensure that they have everything they need to open,” Yanity said.
Nancy Smith, the fair’s assistant manager, said officials have computed the amount of water that the concessionaires will need during the fair’s run and already have a tractor trailer filled with gallon jugs of water that are being distributed to vendors so they will be up and running when the gates open at noon Wednesday.
Water is used everywhere in fair operations, from making lemonade and fountain drinks, to boiling hot dogs, mixing batter for fried foods and cleaning up. Fair personnel will be monitoring water use during the fair and will bring in more as needed.
There are no public water fountains on the fairgrounds, but fairgoers will be able to purchase bottled water. Soaps and hand sanitizers will be available in restrooms and in the barn areas.