Sherry Gobble has been wary of drinking the tap water in her neighborhood for more than a year.
“I feel like I’ve become very suspicious of all water,” she told ThinkProgress in November. “When I go to a friend’s house, and they offer coffee or tea, I don’t drink it because I don’t know where it came from.”
On Monday, her fears were confirmed. Nineteen households and a church in her community of Dukeville, North Carolina were sent letters by the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) warning them not to drink or cook with well water due to elevated levels of toxic heavy metals, the Associated Press reported. Like Gobble’s home, each is located within a quarter mile of a coal ash pond owned by Duke Energy.