CHARLESTON, WV -
UPDATE - The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection issued two notices of violation to Freedom Industries. One of the violations is for allowing a discharge from an unpermitted outlet. The second is for failure to comply with the terms and conditions of a prior order to implement an approved sump management plan.
In an interview Friday morning with Kelley Gillenwater of the .DEP she explains the protocol they went through to alert the public of the leak, how the leak happened, how much the trenches are monitored. ________________________________
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has inspectors at the site of the Freedom Industries spill following the overflow of a storm water collection trench, which resulted in a small but undetermined amount of water spilling into the Elk River.
According to a news release issued by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, a DEP inspector noticed water overflowing from a containment trench at the site of the Freedom Industries cleanup at about Thursday, June 12. The news release says a sump pump that was in place to pump overflow to a storage tank at the site had stopped working, and the inspector restarted the pump, which stopped the overflow.
The news release say it is not yet clear if the water entering the river contained any amount of crude MCHM, which was the material that spilled at the site on Jan. 9.
The news release goes on to say that samples of the water are being taken from the trench, as well as at the intake at West Virginia American Water Company’s treatment plant and of the treated water. These samples will be tested at multiple labs, including at Beckley and Huntington, with results expected by Friday morning.
The exact readings are not yet available.
According to the news release, there were no odors reported at the site on Thursday.
DEP inspectors are still on the scene at the Freedom site. The news release says inspectors have been at the site on a daily basis monitoring the cleanup work and the containment facilities, which is how Thursday’s incident was discovered.
Additional DEP personnel, as well as the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, West Virginia Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, West Virginia American Water Company and Kanawha-Charleston Health Department officials have been notified.