W. Va. Chemical Spill Plume Expected to Reach Evansville Early Monday Morning

City of Evansville Seal

The Evansville Water & Sewer Utility (EWSU) has received notice from the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO) that the chemical spill originating in Charleston, W. Va., is estimated to reach Evansville around 12:30 a.m. Monday, Jan. 20. The plume is expected to reach the Newburgh Lock and Dam around 5 p.m. Sunday.

This weekend, EWSU’s water quality manager will travel to Louisville to meet with officials from Louisville Water to assess the situation first-hand and discuss Louisville’s handling of the plume.

EWSU will conduct routine tests on Evansville’s intake water daily, as usual, to determine the water quality level. Organic components will be more closely watched. The Utility is planning to apply its activated carbon mixture material to all intake water beginning Sunday afternoon and will continue that method of treatment until it is affirmed that the spill has completely passed EWSU water intake valves. The carbon treatments will act to absorb any organic contaminants in the river water. The Utility and ORSANCO will monitor the gas chromatograph (GC) and gas chromatograph – mass spectrometer (GCMS) readouts for 4-methylcyclohexane methanol (MCHM) contamination levels.

EWSU has created a message center on its website to update residents and businesses regarding water quality and common concerns. Please visit this link for more information: http://www.evansvillegov.org/index.aspx?page=3146. Or, follow @EvansvilleINGov and hashtag #WVChemleakEVV on Twitter.