WVAW issues update on water sampling and test results - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

WVAW issues update on water sampling and test results


CHARLESTON W.Va. (January 22, 2014) ? West Virginia American Water
officials announced today that ongoing water sampling and testing results
show non-detectable or extremely low levels of MCHM in water samples
gathered systematically through the Kanawha Valley water distribution

"Data points collected by our interagency team over the past few days
indicate decreasing levels of MCHM," said President Jeff McIntyre. "The
majority of samples are reading Non-Detectable. In areas where sample
results show levels above the non-detectable limit, they are still
extremely low and only a fraction of the CDC-established 1 ppm
health-protective limit."

McIntyre explained that when minute levels of the chemical are still
detected, crews are dispatched to continue flushing the area. These areas
are generally in the far extremities of the system or near the end of main
water lines. All samples in the plant's downtown Charleston pressure zone
have been reading at non-detectable limits for several days. However, the
interagency team will wait until all sample points in the system return
non-detectable levels before communicating this in light of the CDC's
recommendation for pregnant women to consider an alternative drinking water
source until the chemical is at non-detectable levels in the water
distribution system.

The process of identifying flushing and sampling points is based on the
predicted movement of water from zone to zone and mapped by water system
experts from West Virginia American Water and the W.Va. Bureau for Public
Health. Customers are able to review water sample data on the W.Va.
Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management website at

Yesterday after learning that Freedom Industries identified an additional
chemical, referred to as "PPH," that was part of the January 9, 2014
chemical spill, the interagency response team ? including the W.Va. Bureau
for Public Health, West Virginia American Water and National Guard ? met to
determine the best course of action for re-testing historical samples for
this newly disclosed material.

According to a statement to the W.Va. Bureau for Public Health yesterday
evening, the CDC indicates that given the small amount of PPH in the tank
and the initial review of currently available toxicologic information, the
information does not suggest any new health concerns associated with the
release of PPH. The interagency team has determined that the WVDHHR is best
positioned to discuss additional health-related questions about this

West Virginia American Water has multiple laboratories, including MATRIC
(Mid-Atlantic Technology, Research & Innovation Center) in South
Charleston, testing water samples and analyzing data, and we will share
those results when available. The water samples being tested are samples
collected both before and after the "Do Not Use" order was lifted.
Customers do not need to flush or take any additional action at this time.
The interagency team will communicate with our customers the water sample
results we obtain from this new round of testing.

To address frequently asked customer questions, West Virginia American
Water developed a two-page FAQ document entitled "Our Next Steps," which
can be found at http://www.amwater.com/wvaw/about-us/news.html.

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