Culloden Only Cabell County Town under Water Order

By: Olivia Fecteau Email
By: Olivia Fecteau Email

CULLODEN, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The water problems extend all the way to the Culloden area of Cabell County. West Virginia American Water tells that this is because of how their system is set up.

Laura Jordan from West Virginia American Water tells the system stretches out like an octopus from Charleston, so water coming to Culloden is pumped through lines from Charleston. Even though that area and others affected do not directly touch the Kanawha or Elk rivers, they are affected by the water ban.

“I guess this is the end of the line right here for [West Virginia] American Water, so yeah, it was kind of odd. I told my son, ‘We're not going to be bothered. We're down here at this end,’ but I guess we are,” Arthur Taylor said Friday as he picked up bottles and jugs of water at the Culloden Volunteer Fire Department.

Taylor said the water ban was an inconvenience but also a concern because of the possible health risks.

“The illness, sickness, what it's going to do to the environment later on,” Taylor said. “I don't know anything about the chemical to say too much good or bad about it, so we're all up in the air. We're common folks – we're not chemists.”

The Culloden Volunteer Fire Department handed out bottles of water and sports drinks Friday. Volunteers also filled up jugs and containers from a “water buffalo” tank of clean water.

“I'm here to get some water for the baby because she has to make formula,” Deborah Williams, who was caring for a granddaughter in Culloden, said. “Right now, we're in desperate need of washing baby bottles and filling them up.”

She said she was concerned about how long this could go on and was frustrated with the unanswered questions from the company responsible for the spill.

“Nobody knows how long it's going to be, so we're just riding the storm with the rest of them,” Rodney Shirkey, the assistant chief of the Culloden Volunteer Fire Department, said. “As long as you got everybody pitching in and kind of on the same page, it kind of helps this process run smooth.”

Stacy Kirk lives in a rural part of Culloden and said she was also concerned about the health risks from contaminated water.

“They don't even know what the health risks are. We had bathed, cooked and everything right before the news came on yesterday,” Kirk said.

Kirk picked up several jugs and bottles of water Friday, but she told it wouldn’t last long.

“I have my sister and her two babies, my daughter and her two babies, plus me, my husband and my son and we have to have water,” Kirk said.

For now, West Virginia American Water customers in Culloden are under the same restrictions as people in the other eight counties affected by water contamination. Do not use tap water for anything other than flushing commodes. Do not drink, bathe in or cook with tap water.

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