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DHHS Revises Health Advisories for the Dan River Area

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, July 22, 2014
Contact: news@dhhs.nc.gov
              919-855-4840

Raleigh, N.C. - NC DHHS' Division of Public Health is updating the health advisories issued in February 2014 related to the coal ash spill in the Dan River near Eden. The advisories address concerns associated with human exposure and consumption of fish and shellfish.

Recreational Water Advisory

DHHS is 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 in North Carolina was removed June 30, 2014. DHHS has 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. The Department will continue to monitor data as it becomes available to identify potential health risks.

Fish and Shellfish Consumption

A potential fish and shellfish consumption hazard still exists immediately downstream of the release. DHHS recommends that people not consume 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.

 

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