CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state Bureau of Public Health announced Wednesday night the U.S. Centers for Disease Control recommends pregnant women in the nine-county water emergency region drink bottled water until crude MCHM is out of the West Virginia American Water system.

(Read CDC letter here)

The CDC is sticking with its previous advice that it anticipates no health problems from contamination levels less than 1 part per million.

The following is the full statement released Wednesday night by the state DHHR:

“The West Virginia Bureau for Public Health advises, after consultation with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this evening, that the CDC recommends—out of an abundance of caution—that pregnant women drink bottled water until there are no longer detectable levels of MCHM in the water distribution system. However, the CDC re-affirmed previous advice that it does not anticipate any adverse health effects from levels less than 1 ppm.”


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  • Pure Water Warrior

    The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA), and the American Red Cross published a document titled “Food and Water in an Emergency“; it recommends only three ways to purify water during an emergency – boiling, chemical disinfection and distillation.

    In fact, the CDC published a document titled “Drinking Water Treatment Technologies for Household Use“, and found distillation systems to be one of the most effective methods of drinking water treatment.

    Steam distillation is the only purification method that will consistently provide 99.9% pure water.

  • Charleston

    I am wondering how most will respond as well, when WVAW Co. will jack up our rates when they have to update there chemical detection systems near the intake? Talk about a lot of pi$$ed off individuals!

  • Joy

    If pregnant women can't drink water no one should drink water or shower in it! I worry about the kids that have been around it!

  • Larry

    I think a lot of the people supposedly getting sick from this have the flu, or some other illness. If it's so dangerous how do the people who work with it, load, unload it, etc. survive?

    • wvangler

      All risks are not made evident immediately. You are only considering acute toxicity. Long term/delayed toxicity is only ignored by fools that say "it ain't killed me yet".

      Toxicity testing isn't an exact science and there is no acceptable level of this compound in our drinking water anywhere. This is not an acceptable price of progress.

    • Joy

      drinking and working with chemical are completely different!

  • Randy

    Aaaalllllllssssssswellllllllllll! Unless you are pregnant,near sighted, left handed,Buddhist,Fregan,lactose intolerant,Icelandic,left brained,asexual,hearing impaired,Eurasian(including but not limited to the Ural Mountains),pro gun,Siamese conjoined and have no political aspirations..........other than that those-----Drink and be well. IF YOU LIKE YOUR WATER YOU CAN KEEP YOUR WATER. "Really seriously." Quote courtesy of Mr. Jesco White.

  • Harpers Ferry

    Coal is good for WV!!!

    Nothing to see here, just keep supporting coal you SHEEP!!!

    • Brett

      This had nothing to do with coal. It could have been any of the many CHEMICALS that leaked into the river from this fine area they call CHEMICAL VALLEY. This company did not properly maintain its facility and that is on them. They slipped through the cracks and they knew they were getting away with a poorly maintained storage facility. There are so many chemicals that are used in our daily lives that if dumped straight into the river in its crude form directly upstream from a water intake it would have done the exact same thing. No part of the coal industry spilled the chemical during the coal activities. Attacking coal is misguided and absurd. You can attack the chemical industry for not doing their job or maybe some of the officials for the lack of oversight. Your connection between the two is about like blaming the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico on everybody that drives a car because they needed the gas and oil.

  • Mike

    Pregnant women? How about everybody, period. It's not just a few people getting sick and skin rashes from this. How many know someone or heard from someone that it has affected? Count me in, several people from work or in their families. Be careful using this water. This is a tragedy, and it should have been prevented.

  • Benthere

    Announced now? How many consumed the water yesterday? What about eating food prepared with the water? I think many would now agree American Water made the WRONG decision in keep the water intake open. A city the size of Cincinnati can shut the intakes down for two days and still supply water. The president of American Water said some of the customers they service would have run out of water in fifteen minutes to two hours. If the system was shutdown. The system here is that limited in reserve supply? Sounds like all of use deserve more than a $9 credit on our water bill. American Water should pay for the bottled water for persons at risk...not the Taxpayers, and that's just the start to what they owe all of us.

    • I'm honest at least

      It amazes me that the company who caused this seems to have done nothing to help. I say throw them and all persons involved out of this state.