Cleanup, under the direction of the U.S. EPA, has progressed to the point that the Kalamazoo River and Morrow Lake are now open for recreational use.
The first section—nearly three miles near Perrin Dam (Marshall Public Works building) to Saylor’s Landing, a new public river access sites that Enbridge built for the community at 15 Mile Road and the Kalamazoo River—opened on April 18, 2012. The remaining portion opened on June 21, 2012.
Enbridge will continue to perform activities related to cleanup even with the river open, under the direction of the U.S. EPA and Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.
The public may encounter ongoing work activities at several locations along the river. Locations with sediment traps, research equipment, or active work may have restricted access. Please use caution when recreating around these work zones.
The public could see oil sheen or flecks of oil in the river, even after sections open. Remaining oil found in the river is not hazardous upon incidental contact, according to the results of a study conducted by the Michigan Department of Community Health. As the river opens, river access locations include a cleaning station for any residual oil found on watercraft or skin.
Local and state officials, along with Enbridge, remind the public to obey all signage and only use marked, public areas for accessing the river. Do not trespass on private property.
The opening of the Kalamazoo River and Morrow Lake is a great opportunity to remind the general public about water safety. Please use age-specific personal flotation devices while recreating in or near the river. The health and safety of those using this beautiful waterway is a top priority.