Virginia DEQ: Nearly 8,000 fish killed after spill of chemical at Bristol, Va. plant

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BRISTOL, Va. (WJHL) – Officials with the Virginia Department of Environment Quality estimate that around 8,000 fish have died after sodium hydroxide spilled into a creek next to the Shearer’s Foods plant in Bristol, Va.

According to an environmental quality report, a tote containing around 80 gallons of the sodium hydroxide solution was punctured by a forklift, causing the spill of the solution into Little Creek, which runs outside of the facility.

The report classifies sodium hydroxide as a “caustic chemical.” An estimated 7,915 fish were killed as a result of the spill.

The DEQ responded to the plant on June 28 and said in their report that the fish kill was observed around one mile downstream from the creek.

News Channel 11 has reached out to officials with Shearer’s Food for comment and are awaiting a response.

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