CHARLESTON, W.Va. – So far ninety schools impacted by the recent chemical leak into the Elk River in Charleston, West Virginia have met the latest safety threshold set by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin last week called for additional water testing to confirm that all schools in the counties affected by the chemical leak on Jan. 9 are under 2 parts per billion (ppb).
The West Virginia National Guard is revisiting more than 100 schools in Kanawha, Boone, Clay, Cabell, Lincoln and Putnam counties. The results returned so far are indicating a non-detect level at the 2 ppb standard. Non-detect means that there are no traces of MCHM at the 2ppb screening level. After testing thousands of lab samples, chemists are now able to confidently test at 2ppb.
In prior weeks, the National Guard tested water in all schools at a level of 10 ppb which is 100 times more protective than Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s (CDC) recommend level of 1 part per million. The 2ppb is 500 times more protective than the CDCs recommended level.
Schools in the impacted counties have continued to provide hand sanitizer and bottled water to students and food is being prepared with bottled water.
Results for the remaining schools are expected in the next couple of days. Meanwhile, the Rapid Response Team established earlier this month to address issues in schools will continue to answer and investigate calls.
All results are being posted on the West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management website: http://www.dhsem.wv.gov/Pages/WV-American-Water-Emergency.aspx
For more information contact Liza Cordeiro at (304) 558-2699.