Associated Press Published

Update: Latex Spill Not Expected to Reach Washington, DC

Potomac River

Update: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 at 11:45 a.m.

Current models estimate the diluted discharge will reach Hagerstown, Maryland by October 3 and Harpers Ferry by October 10. Rain may alter the projections. The discharge is expected to continue to flow downstream and become diluted.

Washington’s Top News reports the spill is not expected to impact the Washington, DC area’s water supply. The full impact of the spill is still being investigated by the Maryland Department of the Environment.

The Potomac Conservancy is providing updates on its website. Officials say there have been no observations of fish kills.

Original post:

More Potomac River communities are taking steps to protect their drinking water from last week’s chemical spill at a western Maryland paper mill.

Treatment plant operators announced precautions Tuesday as a preliminary analysis indicated the nonhazardous, synthetic latex is not breaking down into potentially harmful components.

A water utility in Berkeley County, West Virginia, says it will close its Potomac intake for up to a week to avoid harming 22,000 customers, or plant equipment, as the plume of styrene-butadiene passes.

Hagerstown, Maryland, says it’s enhancing its water treatment process to ensure safe water for about 90,000 customers.

The Maryland Department of the Environment says preliminary test results from river water collected near the Verso Corp. mill in Allegany County last week did not detect any potentially harmful styrene.