© 2021 West Virginia Public Broadcasting
Telling West Virginia's Story
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Diesel Spill Taints Water for 12,000


Lewisburg is asking its water customers to conserve water following a diesel fuel spill.

A notice posted on Lewisburg's website says the city shut down its water plant and Greenbrier River intake after a tanker truck overturned on Route 92 late Friday night and spilled 2,000 to 3,000 gallons of diesel fuel into Anthony Creek. The creek is a tributary of the river.

The water system was operating on reserves Sunday morning. The notice says customers in higher elevations could experience low pressure.

West Virginia American Water says in a Facebook post that it has sent two 7,000-gallon water tankers to Lewisburg at the request of the state Emergency Operations Center.

This is the second diesel spill that leaked gas into the Greenbrier River in the last year. Last July, a tanker truck carrying 7,800 gallons of diesel fuel overturned at Hermitage Bridge in Bartow, in Pocahontas County. The driver was uninjured but the truck caught on fire and some of the diesel fuel spilled into the Greenbrier River.


Bulk water distribution is setup at the WV State Fairgrounds free parking area and Island Park in Ronceverte. This is bulk water, so bring your own containers to fill. The Greenbrier County Emergency Management is asking residents to plan for three days of water needs due to the current spill. 

Hours of operation will be 7am to 11pm at both locations. 

UPDATE From/For Alderson (12: 15 a.m. Monday, 1/26/2015):

The City of Alderson issued the following release: 

The water sample taken at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 25, 2015 by the West Virginia Bureau for Public Health close to the intake pipe in the Greenbrier River in Alderson tested negative for diesel contamination when tested by the portable lab.  However since this test is more of a rough indicator, and at the request of the WV Bureau for Public Health, the decision has been made to delay the pumping and treatment of new water until a more precise test result is available from REIC Labs in Beaver, WV.  This result is expected around the end of the work day on Monday. Mayor Travis Copenhaver said, “We still have over 200,000 gallons of good treated water in our tanks.  With normal usage, we expect it to last for a day or more.  We hope our citizens will be conservative. It seems very likely we will be pumping and treating water again as soon as the final test result is available tomorrow afternoon.” Alderson Water Utility operators are on stand-by to begin treating and pumping water as soon as they are cleared to do so. 

WVPB is local news, education, music, and entertainment for West Virginia.
Your donation today will help keep us strong and vital.