• Ecorse Watershed MapThe Ecorse River watershed drains 43 square miles of Wayne County and is a tributary to the Detroit River.  The watershed is divided in to three sub-watersheds:

    1. The Main Branch of the Ecorse River is 17 miles long and is in the northern portion of the watershed.
    2. The LeBlanc Drain, an enclosed storm sewer, runs 9.6 miles and drains the central portion of the watershed.
    3. The South Branch of the Ecorse River, which includes the Sexton-Kilfoil Drain, extends 13 miles in the southern portion of the watershed.  

    The river was first sampled for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in November 2019 near its confluence with the Detroit River after the Wyandotte Municipal Services drinking water plant returned an abnormally high detection of PFOS and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS) in raw and finished water samples in August 2019.

    Elevated PFOS concentrations were found in the Ecorse River as a part of the 2019 sampling event (details for which are below).  The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE), Water Resources Division (WRD), added the watershed to its PFAS sampling strategy in 2020.  The watershed, along with the Frank and Poet drain watershed, was sampled for PFAS in August 2020.  This sampling found elevated levels of PFOS throughout the watershed.  EGLE will be conducting additional investigations to identify sources of PFAS in the Ecorse River Watershed.