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Remembering Buffalo Creek 46 years later


The Logan Banner

An aerial view of part of the flooded area of Buffalo Creek shows the damage and destruction suffered by many. During the flood, 125 people lost their lives and another 1,100 were injured.
(Herald-Dispatch file photo)

Gallery: The Buffalo Creek Flood 

MAN, W.Va. — Monday marked the 46th anniversary of the Buffalo Creek Flood.

February 26, 1972, at approximately 8 a.m., a coal slurry impoundment dam owned by Pittston Coal Company burst, releasing 132 million gallons of water, coal refuse and silt into the Buffalo Creek community.

Black waves of water with crests over 30 feet high rampaged through 17 communities destroying everything in its path. Saunders was the first in its path, and Pardee, Lorado, Craneco, Lundale, Stowe, Crites, Latrobe, Robinette, Amherstdale, Becco, Fanco, Riley, Braeholm, Accoville, Crown and Kistler followed.

 Cars, trucks, houses and buildings were swallowed up by the ravishing waters that ripped through the community. Nothing in its path was safe.

By 10 a.m., the floodwaters had reached the Guyandotte River at Man, destroying everything within a 17-mile stretch.

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