More tests are being ordered after a recent test showed a contaminant in the City of Saline's wastewater treatment plant effluent.
In the summer, the City of Saline ordered its drinking water and wastewater effluent be tested for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, known as PFAS. The contaminant is linked to high cholesterol, changes in the body's hormones and immune system, decreased fertility and increased risk of some cancers. In August, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued an advisory that all fish in the Huron River were unsafe to eat due to PFAS contamination.
City Manager Todd Campbell presented a summary of the findings at Monday's Saline City Council meeting. Results of the drinking water study weren't in yet. But tests of the wastewater treatment plant effluent detected PFAS on two occasions, Campbell said. One test showed levels lower than permitted federal regulations. Another test showed levels higher than federal regulations.
Campbell said the state has been notified of the results. Campbell said the next step is to order additional sampling "to confirm the results and isolate the source of contamination."
According to the state, these chemicals have been used in many industrial applications and consumer products, including carpeting, water proof clothing, food paper wrappings, fire-fighting foams and metal plating. They are still used today.
Campbell said the initial plan is to sample the influent flows from the city's east, west and central belts. The sampling will begin in the next week or two.
The Saline Post made a Freedom of Information Act request for the studies. Campbell said he would soon send the documents. The documents will be made public.
Campbell said the results of the drinking water tests are expected soon.