Drinking water from an abandoned mine? Really.

By Anne Li & Jessica Lilly 2.17.17
WV Public Broadcasting

Jessica Griffith holds her one-year-old son in her kitchen sink in Garwood, W.Va.
Credit Jessica Lilly

It’s been happening for years – water systems are slowly coming to a breaking point. The next episode of Inside Appalachia explores one legacy of the coal mining industry – crumbling water infrastructure.

In Garwood, West Virginia, One Woman Fights for Water

Jessica Griffith has lived in Garwood, West Virginia, in Wyoming County, her whole life. She’s a customer of Garwood Community Water, which draws its water from an abandoned mine. This past fall, she said, the water situation was the worst it’s ever been.

“You never know what you’re going to wake up to,” she said. “Some days there might be a little bit of water, enough for you to wash a couple of dishes. Some days you might not have anything at all.”

Just the previous day, for a few hours, Griffith said, nothing but air came out of the faucets at her house. She regularly delivers packs of donated bottled water to her neighbors. Tall stacks of water bottles – a couple of month’s worth, she estimated – remained in her driveway. In her household, bottled water isn’t just for drinking – it’s for brushing your teeth, for cooking and for bathing.  Full story HERE

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