Elk River

February 10, 1904: The Murder of Jay Legg

16 hours ago

On February 10, 1904, Sarah Ann Legg shot and killed her husband, Jay, in their home at Harden’s lumber camp in Clay County. Jay floated logs downstream on the Elk River to Charleston. On the day of the shooting, he returned home early and was fatally shot with his own rifle.

Freedom Industries
AP

People affected by a 2014 chemical spill into a West Virginia river will soon receive their first batch of settlement checks from a class-action lawsuit.

Freedom Industries
AP

West Virginia Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito say the state is receiving $1.2 million in funding from the Environmental Protection Agency to battle surface water pollution.

A release from the two U.S. senators says the grant will also help West Virginia implement an "effective underground storage tank state regulatory program."

Remembering the River People

Jan 23, 2018

Looking back, four years after the 2014 Elk River chemical spill

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

More than three months after a tentative settlement was announced, lawyers are still trying to work out documents to spell out terms of a $151 million deal resolving a class-action lawsuit over a West Virginia chemical spill that tainted a local water system.

Lawyers for area residents and businesses, West Virginia American Water Co. and Eastman Chemical met for nearly two hours Tuesday with U.S. District Judge John T. Copenhaver, the Charleston Gazette-Mail reported. The purpose was to discuss "the progress of finalization of the settlement agreement," according to a court docket entry that offered no other details of the closed-door conference.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

A proposed settlement was filed Wednesday in the state investigation of West Virginia American Water's role in a chemical spill and resulting water crisis in the Charleston area three years ago.

Thousands of gallons of a coal-cleaning agent leaked from a Freedom Industries storage tank into the Elk River in January 2014, leaving 300,000 people without water for nine days.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

A group of Kanawha Valley residents is demanding a full investigation of West Virginia American Water's role in a 2014 chemical spill and a resulting water crisis. 

Thousands of gallons of a coal-cleaning agent leaked from a Freedom Industries storage tank into the Elk River in January 2014, leaving 300,000 people without water for nine days.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

Monday marks the third anniversary of the Elk River chemical spill that left more than 300,000 West Virginians without usable drinking water for more than a week.  The leak  originated at Freedom Industries just outside of Charleston.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

Lawyers say a tentative deal has been reached with West Virginia American Water Co in a class-action case over the company's handling of the 2014 water crisis in the Kanawha Valley.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports no details were made public, but a judge has scheduled a Monday hearing when attorneys said more information is expected to be available.

A federal judge has again postponed the trial against the water company accused of insufficiently safeguarding West Virginia's capital city from a chemical spill that polluted the drinking water of thousands of people in 2014.

According to court officials, U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver has moved jury selection from Friday to Monday.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

A proposed settlement has been reached between Charleston residents and a chemical company accused of not doing enough to safeguard West Virginia's capital city from a spill that polluted the drinking water of 300,000 people in 2014.

According to court officials, attorneys for Eastman Chemical and Charleston-area residents and businesses proposed the settlement. Eastman is producer of a coal-cleaning agent that spilled.

Freedom Industries
AP

U.S. Senators Joe Manchin and Shelly Moore Capito are applauding the passage of a bill that’s been called the first major environmental reform in two decades. The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which aims to prevent another incident like the January 2014 Elk River Chemical Spill, passed the U.S. Senate Tuesday on a voice vote.

Elk River Rescue
WCHSTV

A woman has died after driving her car into the Elk River.

The Charleston Police Department said in a news release that the unidentified driver of the car ran an intersection and passed through the parking lot of a tire warehouse at high speed Wednesday.

Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A bankrupt chemical company responsible for a spill that contaminated a West 

  Virginia river and fouled the drinking water supply of 300,000 residents has been sentenced to the maximum possible penalty on pollution charges.

Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A contractor is set to begin excavating soil contaminated by the January 2014 chemical leak that fouled public water supplies for hundreds of thousands of people in Charleston and the surrounding region.

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection says the contractor hired by Freedom Industries will start digging Monday. Up to 10,000 tons of soil will be removed.

Mike Youngren / Presidio Studios in Lewisburg

Mike Youngren has lived in Charleston for the last 20 years. A West Virginia Public Broadcasting alum, Youngren pursued filmmaking after retiring. When the January 9th chemical leak happened, Youngren decided the problem was widespread enough for people to stop to pay attention to what he had to say. With this in mind, he decided to develop his documentary, Elk River Blues.

Elk River
Malepheasant / wikimedia Commons

A West Virginia panel is suggesting a new tax credit, $12.2 million in extra funding and other tweaks to a law that responded to a January chemical spill.

The Public Water Supply System Study Commission suggested changes in a 47-page report submitted Monday.

The $12.2 million in recommended funding over three years would help utilities complete more intensive source water protection plans.

The proposed state income tax credit would reward landowners who use land for water protection.

MSV photo by Ron Blunt.

Janice Summers-Young is one of two West Virginian artists who were selected for a new exhibit at The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley in Winchester, Virginia. The exhibit, called Second Time Around: The Hubcap as Art, features 287 artists from 36 different countries and opened yesterday.

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