White mystery substance in Sterling Heights drain identified as concrete washout

Substances pollutes Burr Relief Drain #2, officials say

A milky, white substance in a Sterling Heights drain. (WDIV)

STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. - A mysterious milky, white substance found in a Sterling Heights drain has been identified as concrete washout, officials said.

Inspectors with the Macomb County Public Works Office said the substance is polluting the Burr Relief Drain #2, which serves an industrial area in central Sterling Heights.

The concrete washout fully discolored the water in part of the drain, officials said.

"This is a very troubling image," said Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice S. Miller. "The water looks just like milk passing by. We cannot, we simply cannot, continue to treat our environment this way. This drain travels through people’s backyards and ultimately into Lake St Clair. We have zero tolerance for contaminants in our waterways."

A milky, white substance in the Burr Relief Drain #2 in Sterling Heights. (WDIV)

The drain is east of Mound Road and south of 18 Mile Road. It feeds into the Plumbrook Drain, which is a much larger waterway that runs diagonally from the northwestern corner to the southeastern corner of Sterling Heights and discharges into the Red Run in Clinton Township, according to officials.

Crews started to install booms and a curtain Thursday to prevent the substance from getting farther downstream.

A milky, white substance is polluting the Burr Relief Drain #2 in Sterling Heights. (WDIV)

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