May 6, 2021
VDH URGES CAUTION DUE TO ONGOING SEWAGE RELEASE IN POUND RIVER, FROM TOWN OF POUND TO RT. 619 AT POUND RIVER BRANCH OF FLANNAGAN RESERVOIR
Public advised to avoid contact with contaminated water.
(POUND, Va.) — The Virginia Department of Health is recommending an abundance of caution for people and pets when recreating in the Pound River (including swimming, wading, kayaking and tubing) in Dickenson and Wise Counties due to an ongoing sewage release from the Town of Pound wastewater treatment plant. Recreational advisories are in effect in waterways in this area until further notice.
These advisories are in effect along the Pound River, from the Town of Pound treatment plant and its collection system to the Skeetrock Bridge on Skeetrock Road (State Route 619) on the Pound River Branch of Flannagan Reservoir.
On March 29, the Town of Pound reported that infiltration and flows from the Pound River, due to a recent storm event, exceeded the treatment plant’s capacity, resulting in the discharge of untreated raw sewage into the Pound River. The Town of Pound, which owns the plant, suspects the collection system is damaged and is working to locate and repair any damages. Until repairs are completed, the discharge of raw sewage is expected to continue.
For your safety, swimming or other recreational activities for people and pets should be avoided; these include wading, tubing, canoeing and kayaking.
Swallowing contaminated water can cause gastrointestinal illnesses, with vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, abdominal pain or fever. Contact with contaminated water also can cause infections of the ears, nose, throat and skin.
To prevent recreational water illness due to sewage release events, everyone should:
- Avoid contact with any area of the waterbody where there is water with a foul odor, dead or dying fish, or discolored water.
- If you cannot avoid contact with water in the vicinity of a sewage spill, promptly wash skin with soap and water.
- If you experience adverse health effects after contact with the waterbody, seek medical care and notify your practitioner of the waterbody exposure.
For more information on recreational water safety, call 276-889-7621 or 276-328-8000 or see “Safely Enjoy Virginia’s Natural Waters” at www.SwimHealthyVA.com.
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