Vapor intrusion coming from historical contamination at a site in the City of Brighton is potentially impacting some properties in the City and Genoa Township.

The Livingston County Health Department and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality have been reaching out to the communities regarding concerns of vapor intrusion. It’s coming from a groundwater contamination plume from an old industrial site located at 525 North Fifth Street in the City of Brighton. Elevated levels of Trichloroethylene, or TCE were identified years ago in the groundwater. There are now new state screening standards for vapor intrusion, which occurs when vapors from volatile chemicals in contaminated soil or ground water migrate through subsurface soils and/or preferential pathways to impact the indoor air quality of any overlying buildings or homes. There can be health implications when higher levels are detected.

Potentially impacted properties are in a defined area on the west side of Brighton, where the city and Genoa Township meet, somewhat between the old Lindbom Elementary School and Brighton High School, which is not impacted. There is no danger to drinking water in the area, as residents are on city water or served by a different system.

The state has been trying to obtain access to homes to test, which is not required. Livingston County’s Director of Environmental Health Matt Bolang says standards of screening levels have changed and the DEQ began conducting testing a few months ago. He says 15 homes have been tested so far and of those, five were found to be over screening standards so mitigation systems are currently being installed to make the air safe. Mitigation is said to be similar to a radon treatment system and Bolang said it’s important to note that there is state funding set aside to assist with installing the mitigation systems. If test results come back over limits, he says the state will also sometimes pay for voluntary relocation until a system is installed.

Potentially impacted property owners will be invited to an informational meeting on March 20th at the Brighton Community Center and letters will be going out from the state. More information on vapor intrusion is attached. (JM)