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Animal waste from dairy farm flows into North Carolina river

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FLETCHER, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina environmental officials say animal waste from a dairy farm in Fletcher flowed into the French Broad River.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reported that officials were called Tuesday by the local riverkeeper. An inspector with the Division of Water Quality says waste was entering the river from a storage pond at about 11,000 gallons an hour.

Landon Davidson with the water quality division says the there was a high fecal coliform bacteria level in that part of the river. Davidson says it’s hard to determine the impact on fish.

Davidson says officials are not sure how long the pond had been overflowing. But farm owner Billy Johnston says it had not been long.

Johnston and inspectors managed to stop the flow Tuesday.

This article was provided by The Associated Press.  (Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)