Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency is awarding Virginia over $700,000 in grant funding to assist with identifying sources of lead in drinking water in schools and child care facilities.

The agency announced Thursday that the $737,000 will go to the Department of Health, which will use it to support voluntary testing programs.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Worsening dry conditions affecting Virginia have prompted Gov. Ralph Northam to place the state under a drought watch.

The watch issued Friday advises residents, local governments and businesses to use less water. It is meant to get people ready in the event of "a significant drought event."

The most recent U.S. Drought Monitor report shows nearly 56 million residents are now living in drought conditions in parts of 16 Southern states, including Virginia.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware officials say high levels of a worrisome class of manmade chemicals have been detected in four private wells near Dover Air Force Base.

Officials said in a news release Sunday that they had been notified about the elevated levels of per- and polyfluoroalykyl substances, or PFAS, by the U.S. Air Force and Dover Air Force Base.

Wells at the base have PFAS levels above a federal health advisory limit, and testing of nearby private wells has been ongoing.

Don Rush

The water in Pittsville looks like it may be getting a little clearer.

Town manager Joe Mangini has hired a new company that supplies chemical for water treatment to help with the discoloration of the town’s water supply.

He told WBOC that it turned out defective chemicals the town had been using before were the source of the problem.

But the television station reports that some of the local residents want more transparency on how the town officials have handled the situation.

Don Rush

It’s been a tough week on Tangier Island with the freezing temperatures causing the town’s water main to break.

WBOC reports Mayor James “Ooker” Eskridge said that the whole water tower has been drained.

Going into the second week he said the pressure is back up and residents can now shower and use their toilets.

But he cautions that if they want to drink the water it should be boiled first.

The television station reports that temporary hoses have been brought in as a cold front moves in.

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Senator Tom Carper said he was thinking more about his ride home than the signing ceremony he was attending at the White House with President Trump yesterday.  

The Delaware Democrat told the Wilmington News Journal that he was more worried about not getting to his train on time.

During Trump’s claim that Democrats and leftist organizations were behind the caravan of immigrants coming from Central America the paper reports that the president pointed to Carper.

In response Carper handed him the signing pen for the water bill and the two laughed.

Don Rush

Ellendale area residents will go to the polls tomorrow to determine whether a small area along North and South Old State road west of the city limits will turn to Artesian Resources for their water.

The move is part of an effort to deal with the high nitrate problem they have with their shallow wells.

Sussex County Engineer Hans Medlarz told the Wilmington News Journal that the referendum is for a far smaller district than the one that was sought last year.

That plan was defeated by a 13 vote margin and would have provided central water to about 200 residences.

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Those living in the Delaware town of Blades can now drink the water.

Officials recently installed carbon-filtration system that has nearly cleared up the PFC’s found in the underground water supply.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that authorities say residents should flush out their homes of any lingering contaminated water.

The town water now contains 3.4 parts per trillion of PFC’s which is a far lower concentration than what was found earlier this month.

The Environmental Protection Agency limits PFC’s to 70 parts per trillion.

Don Rush

Governor John Carney has signed an executive order that provides for the Delaware National Guard to assist with two 400 gallon tanks of water for the residents who have wells in the town of Blades.

WBOC reports that this follows the discovery of PCB’s in the underground water which is now being investigated by state, federal and local officials.

Tim Ratsep with the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control told the television station that the investigation was only in its early stages.

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If you’re going to offer some cool water to one of the ponies on the Assateague Island National Seashore it’s best not to use the park’s spigots.

Park officials if the ponies get used to the idea that the faucets are a source of water they will come to territorial and protect them.

WBOC reports that, officials say, could become a safety issue for visitors as the ponies become accustomed to the spigots as a regular source of water.

Park officials note there are a number of ponds on the island that provide water for the horses.

Don Rush

The City of Crisfield has been experiencing some water problems.

The town is working to upgrade its infrastructure lines.

But that has left many without water for the first part of this week.

High water levels on Monday led to a delay in the work.

And even with an additional contractor the water was not expected to be turned back on until today.

The water problems forced the closure of the Crisfield Academy & High School and Woodson Elementary school well as some businesses.

Don Rush

Some 40 water systems across Delmarva have high levels of lead.

While the systems that serve 50-thousand people or more treat their water the risk is for the smaller systems.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the largest system affected is Tidewater Utilities which provides water to some 26-thousand people in Bethany Bay and Ocean View.

After Tidewater began treating its water the lead concentration quickly dropped to below the federal standard.


With temperatures in the 90’s Sussex County has announced it is opening up four cooling stations.

The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for Sussex County through 6 p.m.

These stations include the County Administration Office in Georgetown as well as the public libraries in Greenwood, Milton and the South Coastal branch in Bethany Beach.

Paramedics will also make routine stops and answer any heat related questions.

There will also be free bottled water available at the County Administration building for those suffering from the heat.

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The wonders of water about so essential to life. Delmarva Public Radio Essayist George Merrill ponders this wondrous substance reaching back to his childhood.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Wilmington city officials have approved a three-year collective bargaining agreement with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 320.

The Wilmington News Journal reports a pay raise is likely for some workers.

The contract calls for the 150 employees in the Public Works, Streets and Water departments to see a 3 percent cost-of-living salary increase. It also calls for a one-time payment of either $2,000 or $4,000 per worker, depending on the hire date.

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Ocean City officials say that five people were saved yesterday.

A town spokesperson told the Salisbury Daily Times that three adults went into the water after two children got into the trouble.

The paper reports that one adult was airlifted out of the region.


It’s a no from the Salisbury City Council to giving up land to Wicomico County that would have expanded athletic facilities at the Henry S. Parker Athletic Complex on Naylor Mill Road.

Last night there was a two hour public hearing on the 35 acre parcel.

But there was no motion to approve the deal effectively ending the transfer.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that among the concerns was the impact on the area’s largest source of underground water the Paleo Channel.

A city well is also located on the site.

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CORDOVA, Md. (AP) - Farmers are eager for drone technology.

The small, relatively inexpensive unmanned aerial vehicles could replace humans in a variety of ways around large farms, such as transmitting detailed information about crops, directing farmers to problem spots and cutting down on the amount of water and chemicals used.

The use of drones in agricultural is just taking off this year after being grounded by the lack of federal guidelines.

It's Hot

Jun 23, 2015

The heat is on.

As temperatures across Delmarva reach into the 90’s the Worcester Commission on Aging Adult Day Care Center in Snow Hill is opening up as a cooling station.

Development Coordinator Debbie Ritter tells WBOC seniors should use fans at home if they do not have air conditioning.

Also, they should be sure to drink plenty of water during the day.

In addition, Ritter says that the elderly should be conscious of how prescription drugs interact with the heat.


CURTIS BAY, Md. (AP) - Anne Arundel County fire officials say two people were rescued from Curtis Creek after their boat struck a bridge.
The Capital reports that a 47-year-old man and 24-year-old woman were rescued near the U.S. Coast Guard yard on Sunday night.

Don Rush

Mayor Jim Ireton has set a deadline of July 1st for Wicomico County to come to an agreement on tax relief for city residents when it comes to providing  city fire and emergency services.

If the deadline is not met those services will no longer be extended beyond the city limits.

That was the message from the Mayor to the City Council yesterday during a discussion of his plans for the 2016 fiscal year.

Don Rush

Time is running out for some Maryland farmers who want to continue getting federal assistance to improve soil, water, air and habitat quality on their land. Maryland News Connection reporter Mona Shand has this report.

Swimmable Water Weekend

Jul 26, 2013

The Maryland river keepers are out testing the waters so that people across the state can jump in for Swimmable Water Weekend.

It’s a global event to raise awareness of water quality and impact of pollution.

Maryland News Connection reporter Allison Burns has the story.

Don Rush

Ever since the homes in Wicomico County’s Coulbourne Woods and Morris Mill subdivisions were constructed in the early 1990’s resident were exposed to water contaminated by an environmental solvent.

That’s what state environmental official told a public gathering at Parkside High School in Salisbury last night.

Art O’Connell with the Maryland Department of the Environment land management division said the chemical was most likely trichloroethylene from a former farm that used untreated human refuse as fertilizer before the 1980’s.