Posted by The Huron Hub | Sept. 2, 2021 | 10:40 p.m. EST
Governor Gretchen Whitmer today declared a state of emergency for the City of Flat Rock and Wayne and Monroe counties, after an unknown odor was detected in the city’s sewer system.
“We are working closely with local officials and emergency crews to investigate the source of these fumes and protect the safety of residents in the area,” said Governor Whitmer. “My top priority is ensuring that every resource is available to the City of Flat Rock, Wayne County, and Monroe County to determine where the odor originated, so that we can clean up the affected area and prevent further harm. I’m grateful to the leadership in the City of Flat Rock, Wayne County, Monroe County, and all of the first responders who have been on the ground keeping people safe.”
By declaring a state of emergency, Governor Whitmer has made available all state resources in cooperation with local response and recovery efforts in the designated area. The declaration authorizes the Michigan State Police, Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division (MSP/EMHSD) to coordinate state efforts above and beyond what MSP/EMHSD has already been doing in conjunction with local agencies.
“The Flat Rock community should be able to go to sleep tonight knowing that their homes and businesses remain safe, and that clean-up efforts are already underway,” said Congresswoman Debbie Dingell. “Working with the EPA, state, county, and city leaders, we were able to mobilize immediately and take concrete steps to address this issue before it reached additional homes and put more of our neighbors at risk. As we rapidly begin clean-up efforts, I thank the EPA, Governor Whitmer, and our partners on the ground for working quickly to enact this state of emergency to get our community the resources they need now.”
On September 1, the City of Flat Rock declared a local state of emergency after discovering high levels of an unknown gas in the city sewer system and nearby homes. Hazmat teams have worked around the clock to evacuate impacted areas and to find the source of the fumes. Wayne County also declared a state of emergency and requested the governor’s declaration.
The declaration of a local state of emergency activates local emergency response and recovery plans. By requesting a governor’s declaration, the county has determined local resources are insufficient to address the situation and state assistance is required to protect the health, safety and property to lessen or avert the threat of a crisis.