Albany Church Seeks Donations For Chemical Spill Victims

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Christ Community Wesleyan Church near Albany is asking members of the congregation and community to help their West Virginia neighbors during a water crisis.

Pastor Denver Dodrill told his congregants Sunday that a caravan is expected to pull out of the church parking lot around 8:00 AM Wednesday.

The greatest need is for paper products and gallons, not bottles, of water.

Dodrill said he has been communicating with a Wesleyan church near Charleston that is asking for:

Paper bowls, plates, cups

Sanitary wipes

Gallon jugs of water

Water containers.

The crisis began Thursday when a chemical facility about a mile upstream from the West Virginia American Water Company intake leaked a chemical into the Elk River.

That prompted the water company to warn its customers to cease all use of water for both consumption and personal washing and laundry.

Nearly 800 customers had called the poison control hotline by Sunday.

Dodrill said the reports of those coming in contact with the water are surprising.

"As I understand it they just can't use any water," he said.  "Even when they wash their hands it will create blisters."

Dodrill said the church has lined up ten drivers to deliver donations to the area though he adds he doesn't have any idea of how many donations will be forthcoming.

The church is located on Rt. 50 between Athens and Albany near the Budweiser/Classic Brands building.