Village still feeling impact of storm

Published 10:38 am Tuesday, July 10, 2012

COAL GROVE — It will be at least next week before Coal Grove’s water plant is back to normal.

Mayor Larry McDaniel said last week’s wind storm knocked out power to the plant for about 22 hours. The storm also short circuited the plant’s control panel, which keeps operations running on auto-pilot.

During normal operations, the control board automatically operates the low service pumps to relay water into underground holding tanks, or clear wells. Once the clear wells are filled, the control board kicks on the high service pumps, which relays water to the village’s water tank to be distributed throughout the community.

McDaniel said the control board keeps the water tank level at about 25 to 26 feet. During the power outage last week, he said the tank got to as low as 10 feet.

“I thought we were going to have to shut it down,” McDaniel said.

Since the water plant has not been able to run automatically, McDaniel said overtime pay for the plant’s employees has risen. During the week, an extra two hours of overtime each day has been accumulated. The total increases on Saturday and Sunday with about 16 hours each day.

Coal Grove Village Council had a special meeting last Monday to approve the purchase of a new control panel for about $23,500.

McDaniel said the old board was bought used a few years ago and is now obsolete.  Because of its age, parts could not be found to rebuild it.

Monday’s council meeting, McDaniel told council the new board, which had to be built from scratch and programed for Coal Grove’s water plant should be in place by the beginning of next week.

The new panel was bought from and is being built by C.I. Thornburg Co. of Huntington, W.Va.

In other business:

• Coal Grove Police Chief Eric Spurlock reported that the department wrote 211 tickets for the month of June, towed six vehicles, responded to nine crashes and wrote 22 reports.

Spurlock also gave council a resignation letter from officer Alfred Blevins effective July 2, which council accepted.

• Council entered into executive session to discuss collective bargaining with AFSCME Sub Local 711-A President Steve Patton, vice president Aaron Gully, and representative Sandra Shonborn.

• Council also entered into an executive session to discuss a complaint against a public official.

No action was taken on either matter when council reconvened.