MONCURE, N.C. (WNCN) – Facing a deadline to remove coal ash from its current ponds to safer locations, Duke Energy is about to start trucking tons of the toxic sludge to a Chatham County mine.
The prep work is almost complete at the Brickhaven mine site in Moncure. It will receive coal ash from Duke’s Sutton Plant in Wilmington and River Bend Power Plant in Mount Holly.
But some who live near the storage site are worried, including one woman who wears for the health of her grandkids who visit her every week.
“I’m so afraid,” said Bobbie Mendenhall. “Both of them have asthma and I fear that coal ash will drift over here and feel sure it will leach into the water system. We have a private well.”
Another neighbor, Helen Mason, complained about the trucks in the area.
“It’s the traffic more than anything else,” Mason said. “There’s going to be a bad wreck.”
But Duke Energy spokesman Jeff Brooks said the mine is safe.
“The mine structural fill site is a fully lined solution that has multiple layers of natural and synthetic barriers that will fully contain the coal ash and separate it from surrounding ground water,” Brooks said.
Duke Energy said the daily truckloads of coal ash delivers will stop near the end of the year, once a rail line is completed that will allow the ash to be brought in by train instead.