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PSC to Investigate West Virginia American Water Co. Over Handling of MCHM Leak

Residents of the Kanawha Valley and surrounding areas have issued multiple complaints over West Virginia American Water Company's handling of the recent MCHM leak. In response, the West Virginia Public Service Commission (PSC) announced it would begin an investigation into the matter.

According to reports, MCHM leaked into the water supply on January 9, affecting up to 300,000 residents of the area. While the water company was not responsible for the MCHM leak (the leak originated at Freedom Industries), residents claim that the company failed to handle the situation properly. One of the major decisions that residents question is West Virginia American Water Company's decision to leave the Elk River intake open.

The PSC said in a statement that its investigation will aim to answer whether the water company's response to the MCHM leak "constitute[ed] unreasonable or inadequate practices, acts, or services."

A West Virginia America Water Company spokesperson said that the company would fully comply with the PSC's investigation.

Some of the requests the PSC is making of the water company include:

  • Providing a chronological description of pertinent actions taken,
  • Providing a chronological listing of MCHM measurements,
  • Providing a narrative of the process and factors used, and more.

Many of the residents who have filed complaints are seeking financial compensation for the water they had to pay for during the "do not use" period. Some are asking for more.

For more on this story, visit the West Virginia Gazette.

Charleston, WV

Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC
10 Hale St Suite 501
Charleston, WV 25301
Phone: (304) 720-1000

Columbus, OH

Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC
20 E Broad St Suite 1000
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: (614) 587-8423