Report: The 2010 Enbridge oil spill has not left any long-term human health effects

Jun 5, 2014

Nearly four years after a massive oil spill, state officials say it’s OK to get back in the Kalamazoo River.

An Enbridge oil pipeline broke near Marshall in July of 2010, spewing about a million gallons of crude oil, and fouling roughly 35 miles of the Kalamazoo River.

About a million gallons of crude oil leaked from a broken pipeline near Marshall. The cleanup continues along part of the Kalamazoo River where there are still oil deposits on the river bottom.
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Since then the state Department of Community Health has been studying the potential long-term human health effects of the oil spill.

The department issued its final report this week.

“There are really no chemical levels in the surface water that would be a long-term health issue,” says Jennifer Gray, a state toxicologist.

Gray says people swimming in the Kalamazoo River should try to avoid oil sheen or tar balls which may cause temporary skin irritation.

The cleanup of the remaining oil in river should finish up this year.