Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

January 10, 2014

Company working to determine size of W.Va. spill


Associated Press

CHARLESTON — Freedom Industries President Gary Southern says the company is working to determine how much of a chemical spilled from its Charleston operation into the Elk River.

Southern said Friday in a statement that the company also is working to contain the leak to prevent additional contamination.

He says safety is the first priority.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin ordered customers of West Virginia American Water in nine counties not to drink, bathe, cook or wash clothes with tap water after the chemical, 4-methylcyclohexanemethanol, leaked from a containment area on Thursday. The order remains in effect.

Southern says Freedom Industries is working with local, state and federal authorities to fix the problem.

He says the chemical is used to in processing coal.