Transcript for West Virginia Water Emergency
Now, to the dangerous scene playing out in west virginia this evening. The chemical spill leaving more than 300,000 people with no running water. And real fear, tonight, that spill is already making some very sick. Abc's susan saulny is right there tonight. Reporter: Today, hundreds of thousands of desperate residents are finally getting water. Fema trucks rolling in overnight, bringing water to the region that's been ordered to turn off its taps. Have you had trouble getting cases of water? This is the third place we've been to this morning. We were lucky to get a case today. We have six people in our house. Reporter: State officials now estimate 7,500 gallons of a chemical used to process coal leaked out of a storage tank at a chemical plant upstream from a water treatment station serving nine counties. Do not drink it. Do not cook with it. Do not wash clothes in it. Do not take a bath in it. Reporter: Before the warning went out, some people did just those things. Debbie took a bath. And instantly broke out with a rash. I couldn't figure out what in the world was going on. Reporter: Five people have been hospitalized. 73 have sought treatment at the e.R. For symptoms like nausea and vomiting. Residents here want to know why freedom industry took hours to report the leak and why it happened in the first place. This should have never happened. No matter how you look at it. Reporter: Health officials say they know very little about the long-term effects of exposure to this chemical. And it could be days until the public water system here is declared safe. What people really want is information. Susan saulny, thank you. Next to the growing flu
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.