"Clark's doctor treated him for acid reflux disease, which he's never had before in his life. The problem went away after he quit drinking our water."
That conversation was a revelation, Tammy said.
"All of us had been drinking this water for 10 months. We started talking about changes in our health. Every one of us had a cyst on our body. My husband and I had been very weak and tired all summer. That was not normal for us."
After asking for a water test, the Hagys were told to stop drinking the water, but that they could continue to bathe in it.
"Two months later, I developed a rash. My dermatologist told me it was contact dermatitis and told me, 'Do not bathe or wash my clothes in our water.'... We started seeing a black substance in our commode, hot water heater and dishwasher. We were getting headaches and feeling very sick," Tammy said.
In January 2009, the Hagys moved into a motel room, about 25 minutes away, for two months. When the gas drilling company stopped paying for the motel, they moved into their camper. A month later, they found the rental trailer where they have lived ever since.
"We still don't know anything about what is going to happen," Tammy Hagy said. "I hope no one else has to go through such an ordeal."
Gary Zuckett, executive director of the West Virginia Citizen Action Group, asked, "What other regulated industry gets to have veto power over its inspectors?
"Right now, the Oil and Gas Inspectors Examining Board, which is basically controlled by representatives from the oil and gas industry, interviews and chooses the candidates DEP is allowed to hire."
Today, that five-member board has two representatives appointed by oil and gas executives, two from state regulatory agencies and one "citizen representative." The citizen seat, which must be filled by a gubernatorial appointment, has been vacant for five years.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. Reach Paul J. Nyden at pjny...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5164.