West Virginia American Water Company put up a map showing the area that was contaminated by the chemical last week. The entire area was colored red - contaminated. They started giving the ok to flush the first zone at 5pm yesterday. We live in the fourth zone, which was given the ok at 9pm by turning our area blue. We immediately began the flush, by opening all the hot water faucets for 20 minutes in order to empty the hot water tank. After that we opened the cold water taps for five minutes. Then the water was (supposedly) safe. We still need to replace the filter on our fridge, so we are not using the ice or water in the door until then. This morning Richard and I both took showers before going to work. How wonderful - to be able to use the faucets we had to ignore for five days! I keep thinking I will never take it for granted again, but I know that I will. I have found out that you can get clean with a sponge bath, but a shower makes you FEEL clean. I am extremely happy that this ordeal is over! And it was an ordeal. I guess I've been lucky all my life. We've never had a power outage for more than a few hours, and I don't remember ever having trouble with the water. I've lived in the shadow of Union Carbide and Dupont all my life but it's never been a concern.
Why in the heck would they locate a chemical company right above the intake for a large water company? It just doesn't make sense to me. I heard there are many lawsuits filed already and I hope that company goes out of business forever. Now I read in the Charleston Gazette that the chemical has gone down the Ohio River as far as Maysville, Kentucky, about 143 miles from here and the residents there can smell the licorice smell in their water. They expect it to reach Louisville, Kentucky by the end of the week. Water companies along the river are closing their intakes so they don't bring it in to their systems. This really brings home the thought that terrorists could contaminate a large system, such as Washington, DC or New York City and look how many people that would affect.