Alert April 30, 2019
Rutherford Polk McDowell Health District
The Rutherford Polk McDowell Health District, in conjunction with North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health, and North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Water Resources, are issuing a precautionary advisory pending an environmental investigation for Coxes Creek, Armstrong Creek near NC 226 and North Fork Catawba River.
Event: McDowell County reported an unknown amount of liquid asphalt that has released from an overturned tractor trailer near the 3200 Block of NC226 near Triple J RV Park & Campgrounds.
Liquid asphalt from the incident has spilled into Coxes Creek. The potential exists for a fish kill downstream of the spill. Sheen and brown discoloration of the water is visible into the N. Fork Catawba River.
Notice: Until the conditions posing the impact to the Coxes Creek, Armstrong Creek and N. Fork Catawba are remediated and tested to be diminished or removed, environmental and public health officials recommend:
- Do not access the section of Coxes Creek from the Triple J RV Park on NC 226 downstream to include Armstrong Creek and the North Fork Catawba River.
- Avoid skin contact with the water, soil, and sediment in this area. Especially areas that are associated with sheen or show discoloration.
- If skin comes in contact with contaminated water, thoroughly wash the affected area with soap and water.
- Do not interact with or eat fish that have died in areas impacted from the spill.
For further information please contact the Rutherford Polk McDowell Health District at (828) 659-6642.