Obama makes federal aid available following chemical spill
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- President Obama this morning announced that federal emergency aid will be made available to West Virginia to supplement state and local response to Thursday's chemical spill that prompted a widespread "do not use" order from West Virginia-American Water Co.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency said the move authorizes FEMA to coordinate all disaster relief efforts following the spill of a coal-cleaning chemical from Freedom Industries, a facility 1.5 miles upstream from West Virginia-American's water intake along the Elk River in Charleston.
Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Emergency protective measures, limited to direct federal assistance, will be provided at 75 percent funding.