Elevated levels of polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) have been found in surface water drainage ditches in Fort Gratiot Township. PFAS are man-made chemicals that break down very slowly over time and can accumulate in the human body and the environment. The chemicals are found in many different consumer goods and are also used in manufacturing and firefighting.
The testing that found elevated levels was preliminary, and further testing over the next few weeks will be conducted by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE). Officials say there is no data that suggests a risk to public health. No PFAS have been detected in the drinking water, and the water remains drinkable. Fort Gratiot Township purchases drinking water from the City of Port Huron and the water is tested monthly for PFAS. As a general precaution, residents who have pets that come into contact with water in ditches or storm water retention ponds should rinse the pet thoroughly with fresh water.
Reporting for WGRT, Mike Smith.