WCHS Eyewitness News Home Charleston Eyewitness Newsroom Charleston Storm Team Weather Sports News TV Program Schedule Community Mobile: Smartphone,Tablet and SMS text Get Connected SMS Text Facebook Twitter See-It,Shoot-It RSS News Feed Email List Tumblr


House Hearing Zeroes In On WV Water Disaster

Reported: Feb. 10, 2014 6:29 PM EST
Updated: Feb. 11, 2014 9:43 AM EST
EYEWITNESS NEWS ONLINE WEBCAST VIDEO

News Image

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (Kennie Bass) -Try as they might, members of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure couldn't get any panelists to say the water here is safe.

"The panel sitting here, nobody is willing to say that the water is safe," Representative Bill Shuster, the committee's chair and Republican from Pennsylvania said.

"Nobody would say that it's safe," Representative Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia said. "And that's what we want to hear. We want the confidence that without a shadow of a doubt that the water coming from our tap is okay."

"That's awful Kennie, it's just so frustrating," Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia said. "You know the bottom line is, and I understand it, they're saying within tolerable limits, one part per million, ten parts per billion and on and on but I guess it's going to have to be zero. That's where we ought to get and somebody oughta just say it, it has to be zero."

But the panel, which did not include Freedom Industries president Gary Southern who refused the committee's invitation, provided some new insight into the disaster.

The Chemical Safety Board said that Freedom Industries ordered a review of its facilities in October. It revealed that the storage tanks were not necessarily in compliance with Environmental Protection Agency standards.

And pictures show holes in tank 396, which leaked the crude MCHM.

"I would think that that would give me some sense of a need to make repairs on the tank if I found there was some deficiency in that tank," Johnnie Banks, lead investigator for the U.S. Chemical Safety Board said.

West Virginia American Water President Jeff McIntyre said he didn't shut down his system when he learned about the leak because it would have had serious repercussions in the community.

"I'd like people to try to envision what it would be like to be in a community where there is no water in the pipes and you have no sanitation," McIntyre said. "Where do you go to the bathroom? Hospitals, if there's a fire in the hospital how do you protect those patients?"

McIntyre said if he'd closed the plant down, conservative estimates indicated it would be at least a month before water service would have been restored to all customers.

Capito said she's introducing a House bill which would require oversight and inspection of chemical storage facilities and above ground tanks.

A similar measure co-sponsored by Senators Manchin and Jay Rockefeller has been introduced in the upper chamber.



MORE NEWS FROM EYEWITNESS NEWS
Man Stabbed In Chest In Saint Albans
News
Jul. 29, 2014 4:29 AM EDT
Police in Saint Albans are investigating an overnight ...
Full News Story

Huntington Police Investigating Shooting
News
Jul. 29, 2014 4:26 AM EDT
Huntington police are investigating a shooting.

It ...
Full News Story

Community Supports Huntington Fire Victims
News
Jul. 29, 2014 12:09 AM EDT
Sunday's fire at the Morris Building in Huntington ...
Full News Story


News Sparking Brakes Triggered Truck Tunnel Fire
Jul. 28, 2014 11:30 PM EDT
News Virginia Court Ruling On Gay Marriage Could Have WV Implications
Jul. 28, 2014 10:32 PM EDT
News Dem Vows To Fight For Coal, GOP Calls Claims "Hypocritical"
Jul. 28, 2014 6:36 PM EDT
News Gunshots Scare Families In Small Hurricane Neighborhood
Jul. 28, 2014 5:56 PM EDT
News Drums Across Tri-State This Evening At Laidley Field
Jul. 28, 2014 6:05 PM EDT
News Man Accused Of Stabbing Girlfriend After She Threw His Meth Into Woods
Jul. 28, 2014 4:54 PM EDT
News Aldi To Open Store At Teays Valley Shopping Center
Jul. 28, 2014 4:54 PM EDT
News Man Accused In Robbery Has Bond Terms Modified
Jul. 28, 2014 4:22 PM EDT
News Ohio Woman Sentenced In WV Embezzlement
Jul. 28, 2014 4:09 PM EDT
News Huntington Museum Hosts Arts And Bots Nature Camp
Jul. 28, 2014 3:39 PM EDT
News Morris Building Tenants Worried About What Comes Next
Jul. 28, 2014 6:00 PM EDT
News Ohio Authorities Say Indictments Could Put Dent In Drug Trafficking Organization
Jul. 28, 2014 2:31 PM EDT
News Advocacy Organization Applauds Federal Court Ruling That Declares Va. Gay Marriage Ban Unconstitutional
Jul. 28, 2014 3:19 PM EDT
News WV Attorney General $950K Settlement With Three Companies
Jul. 28, 2014 2:20 PM EDT
News Businesses Extend Helping Hand To Employees At Two Restaurants Affected By Huntington Fire
Jul. 28, 2014 2:03 PM EDT
News Dirty Girl Mud Run Says Its Assets Have Been Acquired By Human Movement
Jul. 28, 2014 1:40 PM EDT
News Firefighters Say Morris Building Fire Believed To Be Accidental
Jul. 28, 2014 2:02 PM EDT
News West Virginia American Water To Conduct Public Tour
Jul. 28, 2014 11:58 AM EDT
News Tennant Spoofs White House's Power In New Ad
Jul. 28, 2014 11:10 AM EDT
News Putnam Deputies Locate, Arrest Escapee
Jul. 28, 2014 11:03 AM EDT
News Power Outages Reported In Some WV Areas; Possible Tornado In Ritchie County
Jul. 28, 2014 2:10 PM EDT
News Rock Beats Paper: Study Says Fist Bumps Spread Fewer Bacteria Than Handshakes Or High-Fives
Jul. 28, 2014 10:40 AM EDT
News Human Trafficking Conference Set In Morgantown
Jul. 28, 2014 10:29 AM EDT
News WV Awarded With 23 Litter Control Grants
Jul. 28, 2014 9:37 AM EDT
News WV Man Arrested After Child Found In Hot Car
Jul. 28, 2014 9:27 AM EDT
News Two Men Die In Boone County Crash
Jul. 28, 2014 9:22 AM EDT
News Real Life Rapunzel Cuts Hair For Cancer
Jul. 28, 2014 8:54 AM EDT
News Dollar Tree Buying Peer Family Dollar Stores For About $8.5 Billion
Jul. 28, 2014 8:57 AM EDT
News Dozens Treated For Illness At Keith Urban Concert
Jul. 28, 2014 8:58 AM EDT
News Cable On Ohio Amusement Park Ride Snaps, Injuring Two
Jul. 28, 2014 11:40 AM EDT


Advertise on WCHS-TV Online

West Virginia News
Weekend tornado confirmed in West Virginia

The National Weather Service has confirmed a tornado touched down in Pleasants and Ritchie counties over the weekend.
Full Story

Kentucky News
Kentucky schools collaborating on space project

Kentucky scientists and engineers are collaborating on a project involving research aboard the International Space Station.
Full Story

Ohio News
Judge orders Cincy to repay tax money

A judge says the city of Cincinnati improperly borrowed millions of dollars designated for neighborhood projects to pay its taxes to the school district.
Full Story







Fugitive Files Tuesdays at 6 PM on Eyewitness News

West Virginia Wildlife Wednesdays at 6 PM on Eyewitness News

ABC News web site







Send Mail Send email to news@wchstv.com for information or comments concerning WCHS-TV Eyewitness News.
Copyright ©2014, WCHS-TV8. Portions are Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or distributed.

WCHS ABC 8 provides local news, weather forecasts, traffic updates, notices of events and items of interest in the community, sports and entertainment programming for Charleston and nearby towns and communities in the Tri-State area, including Huntington, Dunbar, Marmet, Montgomery, Nitro, South Charleston, St. Albans, Cedar Grove, Chesapeake, Clendenin, East Bank, Glasgow, Pratt, Cross Lanes, Elkview, Pinch, Sissonville, Big Chimney, Cabin Creek, Chelyan, Davis Creek, Institute, Jefferson, Loudendale, Mink Shoals, Pocatalico, Quick, Quincy, Rand, Buffalo, Eleanor, Hurricane, Nitro, Poca, Winfield, Culloden, Fraziers Bottom, Hometown, Red House, Scott Depot, Teays Valley, Danville, Madison, Hamlin, Logan, Chapmanville, Man, Delbarton, Kermit, Gilbert, Matewan, Williamson, Summersville, Richwood, Flatwoods, Gassaway, Sutton, Spencer, Ravenswood, Ripley, Mason, Point Pleasant, Ashland, Pikeville, Ironton, Portsmouth, Gallipolis, and Athens.