Water Problems May Be Easing For Letcher County Family

By: Tanner Hesterberg Email
By: Tanner Hesterberg Email

It's being blamed on everything from old mines to a civil war burial site.
But whatever caused water contamination in one part of Letcher County, some possible solutions are now being discussed.
Chris Yonts has lived in the mill creek area of deane in Letcher county for 33 years. One year ago, he made a shocking discovery about his well-water supply.
Lab reports recently confirmed the water is filled with poisons like lead and arsenic, meaning Yonts and his wife and two children have to travel to his mother's house to shower and wash dishes.
"This is a place that i used to love because i've lived here all my life," Yonts said. "But its getting now to where I'd be glad to move if I could find a place to go."
So what exactly is causing the well-water here to be contaminated? Yonts believes it could be past mining activities that took place nearby.
Regardless of what is causing the contamination, there may be some relief in sight.
"That Mill Creek area was studied through abandoned mine land," said Mark Lewis, the general manager for Letcher County Water and Sewer. "It was deemed not to be eligible for any funding. "Of course that was no fault of the fiscal court or the water district, we have no control over that."
But the Letcher Fiscal Court on Monday discussed the possibility of using funds available through House Bill 265 to extend county water lines to Yont's home. That project could get underway as soon as October.


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