Anheuser-Busch is providing more than 8,500 cases of emergency drinking water to the American Red Cross for their use in relief efforts connected with a chemical spill on the Elk River close to Charleston, W.Va., and weather related concerns impacting the water supply of residents in Floyd County, Ky.
Four trucks loaded with drinking water from Cartersville, Ga., will be sent to three Anheuser-Busch wholesalers for distribution to their local American Red Cross operations. The American Red Cross will truck the water where it' is most needed.
"People in the region are in need of drinking water, and this is one way Anheuser-Busch can help our friends and neighbors," said Peter Kraemer, vice president of Supply and head brewmaster for Anheuser-Busch.
A chemical used in coal processing has leaked from an old tank along the Elk and compromised the water supply. Nearly 300,000 people in nine counties have been affected, and has all but closed the largest city in West Virginia. The water is unable to be drank, or bathed in.
Monday marks the fifth day of the water emergency, which began early Thursday. Two state employees tracked the leak to Freedom Industries, which owns a row of vintage storage tanks along the south bank of the Elk. The chemical had leaked from an inch-wide hole in the bottom of one tank, pooled in a containment area and then seeped through a porous cinder-block retaining wall, down the bank and into the river.
Since 1988, Anheuser-Busch has donated more than 72 million cans of emergency drinking water following natural and other disasters.