[ View the story "West Virginia chemical spill triggers state of emergency, water ban" on Storify] West Virginia chemical spill triggers state of emergency, water ban Residents of affected areas warned not to use water provided by West Virginia American Water company.
AJAMStream· Thu, Jan 09 2014 17:39:02
Reaction to Tomblin's announcement soon spread online.
Welcome to West Virginia.. Where drinking whiskey is safer than drinking the waterHuπter Perry
If you have West Virginia American water don't use it! There was a chemical leak! The only thing you can do is flush the toilet!Kristen Dodrill
The West Virginia American Water company
a warning to its Facebook page and issued a tweet at 6:16 p.m. local time:
PUBLIC HEALTH NOTICE:CUSTOMERS IN THE KANAWHA VALLEY WATER SYSTEM are instructed to DO NOT USE THEIR TAP WATER... http://t.co/SSQ07asd9zWV American Water
About 40 minutes later, it issued another tweet:
West Virginia American Water has issued a DO NOT USE WATER NOTICE for all West Virginia American Water customers... http://t.co/kBWq2mz58VWV American Water
Customers were quick to call out the company for its poor handling of the situation:
@wvamwater Why is there NOTHING on your website about this?!Jennifer™
@wvamwater About time you issued this! Communication failure to the public on your part!Dr. Susan Gardner
To late...already cooked ran the dish washer, DONE laundry and drank IT.. If it happened so early why put the WARNING OUT .NOW...TO LATE ...it happened at 10:30 AM...Teresa Boggs Meadows
If this happened this morning and WV American Water is just now (10 minutes ago) issuing a warning after kids were sent to school and the population consumed and used the water all day, there's going to be some pissed off people and rightfully so. Negligence.Jennifer Honey Thomas
Many also criticized the lack of information and follow-up to resident concerns:
What are the effects if you've already used it??? I've noticed that these questions are being avoided!Christal Dawn Hancock
It say's part of Kanawha county.... What part ????????Jenny Vest
Residents rushed to local stores to stock up on bottled water, sharing photos and updates of many places that had already sold out:
Stores across the five WV counties jammed with customers clambering for water after state of emergency.tim irr
Employees at Target are now pulling out baby water, Pure. That's all that's left. http://t.co/KxABqXFH1STaisha L. Walker
@wvamwater has been tainted by a chemical leak. Joy. I thought I was getting a head start on stocking up. Nope. http://t.co/xTLfpI7vC3VasiliaSD
The St. Albans Krogers and K-Mart are sold out of water http://t.co/ZAeuvdKZLGSAPD
So thankful we've stored water. Stores are price gouging and selling out. Sounds like a serious leak we've got.https://t.co/uptLr1oYPDHolly Renee
Good job, Kroger. I'd like to think folks kept that in mind when stocking their cart. http://t.co/t9ggJJhAI3VasiliaSD
One West Virginia resident also mentioned the difficulties the water ban would have on hospitals.
Just talked to a nurse friend in #Charleston, WV. Surgeries use tap water. Stores are already sold out. Hospitals are gng 2 be a big concernDavid Iversen
Do you live in one of the affected counties in West Virginia? Share your experience in the comments below.