RALEIGH, N.C. -- The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services says they are updating their health advisories issued in February related to the coal ash spill in the Dan River.
DHHS officials say they are recommending lifting the recreational water advisory after evaluating the most recent available surface water and sediment data from the Dan River downstream from the coal ash spill. The large coal ash deposit that remained was removed June 30, 2014.
Workers have evaluated sediment and surface water data collected after the work was completed that confirms that no incidental ingestion or skin contact risk exists for the sediment or the river water. Contaminants associated with the coal ash spill are at levels that should not pose a health risk during recreational use of the river. Workers say they will continue to monitor data as it becomes available to identify potential health risks.
A potential fish and shellfish consumption hazard still exists immediately downstream of the release.The department recommends that people not eat any fish or shellfish collected from the Dan River in North Carolina downstream of the Duke Power-Eden spill site.
DHHS will evaluate the data from fish samples as it becomes available to identify when health risks associated with eating the fish are no longer a concern.