No contact advisory issued after fire in Freeport

Water runs from a sink in the Freeport Fire Department, Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017.


FREEPORT, Mich. (WOOD) — The Village of Freeport has issued a no contact advisory for their water following a fire at Ketchum Machine Company.

According to a release on the villages’ website, a valve failed and fire retardant got into the water. The village has notified the DEQ, and they will post any updates on their website.

The village posted an update on their Facebook page around 9:05 a.m., stating the advisory only affects people living in the village limits using village water. Those who have a well are not impacted, according to the statement.

Barry County dispatchers say the fire at Ketchum Machine Company started around 6 p.m. Friday. Officials were going door to door to tell residents about the no contact advisory overnight.

Ketchum Machine Company fire
A fire at Ketchum Machine Company forced a no contact advisory for the Village of Freeport (Oct. 28, 2017/Joe Geiger/ReportIt)

According to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, raw water from the Little Thornapple River and firefighting foam were pumped into the water supply through a fire hydrant. DEQ officials say the foam did not have fluoride-containing compounds, but could cause irritation if exposed to skin, or if it’s swallowed or inhaled.

DEQ officials say the water system is being flushed, and two rounds of water sampling will take place before the no-contact advisory is lifted. They did not provide an exact time frame for when they anticipate the water will be safe to use. But Freeport Fire Chief Jim Yarger says it could take a few days.

“We’re hoping tomorrow or Monday we’ll go to boil water. And then if the flushing works, and we have to have two samples passed, so that would be two days. So we’re looking like Wednesday,” he said.

Village officials say drinking water will be available at the Freeport Fire Department.

This is a developing story. Check back for further updates.