Skip to comments.Frustration grows days after W.Va. chemical spill
Posted on 01/12/2014 11:18:34 PM PST by Morgana
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Frustration is mounting for many of the 300,000 West Virginia residents who've gone three days without clean tap water.
Chris Laws found bottled water on Saturday for his two elderly next-door neighbors.
"They can't get out," said Laws, 42, of Marmet, a coal miner. "I'm keeping an eye on them. You got to watch out for your neighbors. They're the ones who are going to watch out for you."
He said he was angry at the company at the center of the leak, Freedom Industries.
"A lot of people are facing bad situations because of this," he said. "They're struggling. What I don't understand is how did this happen?"
The emergency began Thursday following complaints to West Virginia American Water about a licorice-type odor in the tap water. The source: the chemical 4-methylcyclohexane methanol, which had leaked out of a 40,000-gallon tank at a Freedom Industries facility along the Elk River.
State officials said Saturday they believe about 7,500 gallons leaked. Some of the chemical was contained before flowing into the river; it's not clear exactly how much entered the water supply.
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The tale of 2 stories.
When the West plant blew up in Texas, the libs blame Republicans for lack of regulations but when it happens in a blue state it’s the company’s fault, especially since they have the name “Freedom Industries.” It sounds Republican so it must be their fault
Much of the problem has been grandstanding by politicians and making sure things are absolutely safe beyond any doubt. It does show the inability of agencies at the state and federal levels to do anything other than react.
The water company owned by a German firm did not seem to know they had a problem even when the alcohol overloaded and bypassed their carbon filter.
One professor at Marshall University told it like it was concerning the toxicity. The state is dealing with an alcohol that mixes poorly with alcohol and is non-toxic. It’s classified as an irritant. Taken full strength it causes problems just like trying to drink 190 proof grain alcohol like Everclear.
It has obviously inconvenienced the residents in one of the states most populated areas. Since the alcohol floats on water, anyone wanting to drink water from the faucet could fill a clear container and pour off the alcohol from the top.
The more adventuress could burn it off outside.
IMNSHO the incident shows the state government struggling to find its ass with both hands. Staffing levels and pay at the DEP should also be checked as contributors to the problem.
In a sense this was a good situation to closely examine what went wrong from several aspects to prevent a much more serious incident from a deliberate attempt in the future.