North Augusta splash pad going strong after early controversy

As an afternoon storm rolled into North Augusta on Friday, Phyllis Ray was loading her rambunctious grandkids into her car after a visit to the city’s splash pad.

It was their third visit to the splash pad at Summerfield Park on Old Edgefield Road, and Ray was still impressed.

“It’s really great,” said Ray, who uses the park as a safe outlet for the boys to burn energy while cooling off.

North Augusta turned on the sprinklers in May for the splash pad’s second summer in the city.

The $135,000 splash pad was completed in April 2011, but the South Carolina Department of Health and Environ­mental Control did not receive an application for an operating permit until months later. The splash pad’s contractor, Tony Ammar, claimed the permit was the city’s responsibility, but city officials expected Ammar to complete the process. The city eventually applied for and received the necessary papers.

South Carolina strictly regulates splash pads because the chlorinated water is recycled, and improper maintenance can lead to water-borne diseases.

DHEC spokesman Adam Myrick said Friday that the department has experienced no recent problems with the splash pad.

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