TDEC Lifts Water Contact Advisory for North Fork Holston River

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 | 9:38am

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) today lifted a water contact advisory for the North Fork Holston River in Hawkins and Sullivan Counties that went into effect on April 28. A sewer line break in Weber City, Virginia was repaired on Friday and no sewage is entering the river from that location any longer.

A crane in Weber City, Virginia, fell into the river on April 24, causing damage to a sewer line and resulting in a leak of approximately 30,000 gallons of untreated wastewater per day into the river just a few miles from the Tennessee border.

“TDEC has conducted our own water sampling of the North Fork Holston River and results are back to pre-spill levels,” said Tisha Calabrese Benton, director of TDEC’s Division of Water Resources. “We have been in close communication with authorities in Virginia, local and state officials in Tennessee, the local water system and private industry as we’ve monitored the situation.”

Because the spill occurred in Virginia, TDEC will not have a direct role in the remediation or potential enforcement processes.