Forty-thousand gallons of manure spilled into Eagle Bottom Creek in Grayson County Monday.
Health officials are warning people against boating, swimming or any recreational activities in the New River, from Fries and the New River Bridge at I-77.
Fries gets it's water from that creek. Officials say they shut down the water plant before any of the contaminated water could make it into the filtration plant system.
It will remain closed until the spill is cleaned-up. The town is also on a conserve water notice until Wednesday afternoon.
Health officials say the contamination came from an accidental spill from a holding tank in Grayson County.
Here is the full news release:
HEALTH OFFICIALS ISSUE WARNING FOR NEW RIVER FOLLOWING MANURE SPILL
(FRIES, Va.) – On May 30, 2011, an accidental spill of approximately 40,000 gallons of manure from a holding tank occurred on a tributary of the New River in Grayson County.
Officials from Carroll, Grayson and Wythe counties and the city of Galax were notified and worked with the Virginia Departments of Health (Mount Rogers Health District and the Office of Drinking Water) Environmental Quality and Game and Inland Fisheries to determine the impact of the spill for the river and for area residents.
As a result of their investigation, the following measures have been taken:
• While utilizing alternative safe water sources, the Town of Fries in Grayson County issued a water conservation notice to customers on the public water supply system yesterday (May 30). That notice will remain in effect until Wednesday (June 1) afternoon.
• It is recommended that the New River from Fries to the New River Bridge at I-77 not be used for recreational activities (swimmers, boaters and floaters) from now until Friday, June 3, because of the possibility of continuing contamination from the spill before safe dilution levels and passage can occur.
During any recreational water activities, people should take precautions to prevent infections caused by bacteria and other microorganisms in the water. Avoid swallowing lake or river water and don’t swim if you are ill. Also, remember to shower before and after any recreational water activities.
For more information on recreational water illness prevention, visit www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/rwi/rwi-prevent.html.
State and local officials are investigating the spill of about 40,000 gallons of manure into a tributary of the New River.
In a news release, the health department says the manure spilled into Eagle Bottom Creek on Monday. The spill is affecting water in Fries. The water filtration plant was shut down as soon as they received word of the spill.
The plant is still shutdown. We're told the water at the plant was not affected, and the supply should last three days.
Workers are cleaning out the in-take water bin as a precaution. Fries is NOT on a boil water or conserve water notice.