Patrick Center June 4, 2014 | WGVU
nearly four years since the Kalamazoo River was contaminated by nearly one
million gallons of oil in Calhoun and Kalamazoo Counties.
Department of Community Health Wednesday issued an assessment.
July of 2010
nearly 50 homes were evacuated after an oil pipeline owned by Enbridge Energy
More than 800,000 gallons of heavy crude oil choked 35 miles of the
Kalamazoo River and Talmadge Creek. Turtles, fish, birds and mammals were
impacted and humans feared how toxic chemicals may be making them sick, too.
Michigan Department of Community Health released an assessment concluding is
not harmful to health. It says swimming and fishing are safe. Chemicals in
surface water and fish were examined.
concluded that no long-term harm to people’s health is expected from contact
with chemicals in the surface water during recreational activities, such as
wading, swimming, or canoeing. However, contact with oil sheen and globules in
the river may cause temporary effects, such as skin irritation.”
tested for oil-related chemicals. The MDCH finds oil-related chemical found in
the fish is “very low.”
The report concludes, “Mercury and polychlorinated
biphenyl (PCB) levels were similar to levels measured in fish caught before the
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