The last thing our Michigan waters needed was another chemical spill and now authorities are telling people and pets to stay out of the Huron River.

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Huron River

Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty
Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty
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The Huron River is 130 miles long and runs east to Lake Erie. It passes through several counties including Oakland, Livingston, Washtenaw, Wayne, and Monroe. There are 13 parks, game areas, and recreation areas that are connected to the Huron River. The river runs through the cities of Dexter, Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, Belleville, Flat Rock, and Rockwood.

Kayaking on the Huron River on a foggy fall morning
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I am going to Ohio this Saturday and on the way back Sunday I had planned to kayak the Huron River in Ann Arbor but looks like I'm going to have to find another place now.

Chemical Spill in the Huron River

Scientist examing toxic water
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According to FOX 17, a company by the name of Tribar Manufacturing located in Wixom, Michigan, released a chemical by the name of hexavalent chromium that wound up in a wastewater treatment plant. The Wixom wastewater treatment facility, unfortunately, empties into the Huron River system.

Aerial view Water Treatment Plant for Environment Conservation.
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According to OSHA, hexavalent chromium is a dangerous chemical that can irritate the nose, throat, and lungs. Prolonged exposure can damage the mucous membranes of the nasal passages and result in ulcers.  Severe exposure can cause the spetum to separate.

Sara Rice/Getty Images
Sara Rice/Getty Images
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There are a lot of parks along the Huron River and one of those is Kensington Metropark. I have spent a lot of time back in the day at Kensington and have fished Kent Lake tons of times and this is the first park in the line of fire from this chemical spill.

Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty
Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty
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The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy are warning that people and their pets need to avoid contact with the water in the Huron River system.

Kensington Metropark has already shut down anything that has to do with the water in the park, even the splash pad.

Areas of Huron River System to Avoid

Kayaking and canoeing with family. Children on canoe. Family on kayak ride.
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The areas of the Huron River system to avoid are between North Wixom Road which is in Oakland County to Kensington Road located in Livingston County. Also, any part of the Huron River system that is downstream of the Wixom Wastewater Treatment Plant.

People and pets are not to have any contact in any capacity with the Huron River until further testing can be completed. People should not eat any fish from this area or use the water to water their lawn or plants.

Is The Drinking Water Safe in the Area of the Spill?

woman tap water
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The tap water in the areas near the spill is safe because the water piped into homes and businesses comes from a completely different source.

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