Whitesburg KY

Water donated here is headed to Magoffin Co.

Since water from the Whitesburg Municipal Water System has been deemed safe to consume, Letcher County Judge/ Executive Jim Ward said the county is donating 38 pallets of gallon jugs and canned drinking water to Magoffin County, which is now facing water problems of its own.

The water was originally donated to Letcher County a few weeks ago by various coal companies, gas companies and other businesses when a non-consumption water advisory was ordered by the Kentucky Division of Water for customers of the Whitesburg Municipal Water System. The advisory was ordered after some customers reported smelling gasoline in their water on November 1 and a petroleum byproduct was found seeping into the North Fork of the Kentucky River at Ermine, about one mile above the intake to the city’s water plant. The advisory was lifted November 6.

“I would like to personally thank those who donated water and helped in any way they could,” said Ward.

State environmental officials say low stream flow in the Licking River, coupled with fallen leaves in the water, prompted a boil water advisory for Magoffin County utility customers.

The river is the primary water source for about 15,000 customers in the Magoffin County Water District and the City of Salyersville.

WYMT-TV quoted drinking water coordinator Julie Roney of the state Division of Water saying leaves turn the water a dark color as they deteriorate in the river and high manganese levels are common when water is drawn from lower depths of supply sources.

She said neither is harmful, but both make it hard to add enough chlorine to resolve the problem and continue to protect against bacteria.

— From AP, staff reports

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