- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 5, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A federal health official says 300,000 West Virginians can use tap water however they like after January’s chemical spill.

Dr. Tanja Popovic of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention described the water Wednesday as “appropriate for use.”

The Jan. 9 spill spurred a nine-county water-use ban for days. After officials cleared thousands of people to use water again, CDC officials advised pregnant women to consider a different water source.

Popovic said Wednesday the advisory was meant to “empower” pregnant women in health choices.

Dr. Rahul Gupta of Kanawha County said some doctors are advising children under 3, patients on dialysis or with kidney or liver failure, chronic conditions or low immune systems not to drink the water. Popovic said that advice doesn’t conflict with CDC recommendations.

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