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Interactive map shows water testing results after Tribar hexchrome release
August 12, 2022
EGLE launches informational webpage to keep public informed
The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) has created a webpage, Michigan.gov/EGLETribarResponse, after Tribar Manufacturing in Wixom released an industrial plating solution into the Huron River system the weekend of July 29. The page includes an interactive map showing locations of surface water sampling in response to the release, along with test results.
The plating solution contained hexavalent chromium, also referred to as hexchrome, a known carcinogen that can cause adverse health effects through ingestion, skin contact, or inhalation. The liquid was discharged to the sanitary sewer system and routed to the Wixom wastewater treatment facility. The wastewater discharges to Norton Creek, which flows into the Huron River system.
The interactive map shows more than 60 locations of ongoing sampling for hexchrome and total chromium along more than 42 miles of the Huron River system, from Wixom downstream to Barton Pond, site of a City of Ann Arbor drinking water system intake. Location markers on the map expand to show details such as date, water body, depth of sample, and whether any measurable amounts of hexchrome or total chromium were found. The map will be updated with results from ongoing sampling and testing.
To date, of the more than 150 surface water samples collected – including replicates for quality control – three have had detectable levels of hexchrome, and all were below water quality values to protect human health. One of the three detections was at the water quality value to protect aquatic life. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) today lifted a recommendation that had been in place to avoid contact with Huron River system water. State and local officials continue to work together to protect public health, keep residents informed, and answer questions. Resources for the public include:
- Webpages from the Oakland County Health Division, Washtenaw County Health Department, and the City of Ann Arbor.
- The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ MI Toxic Hotline for questions about potential health effects or exposures: 800-648-6942.
- EGLE’s Environmental Assistance Center, a single point of entry into the agency’s programs: EGLE-Assist@Michigan.gov or 800-662-9278.