Wolverine expands toxic tap water testing area

ROCKFORD, Mich. (WOOD) — Wolverine Worldwide is expanding the sampling area of residential wells for likely carcinogens.

In January, crews will start testing residential wells 1,500 feet on either side of the Rogue River, running from the former Rockford tannery south to the Grand River. The tests will determine if the wells are contaminated with PFAS, a likely carcinogen.

This map shows the expanded testing zone for PFAS in the Rockford area.

>>Inside woodtv.com: Complete coverage of the toxic tap water investigation

In a Friday letter sent to homeowners in the affected area, the company writes “Wolverine is voluntarily offering to sample your well for substances known as PFAS, and provide you with water while waiting for the test results.”

Wolverine used Scotchgard, which contained PFAS, to treat shoes at its now-closed Rockford tannery. The company dumped much of the tannery sludge at the House Street dump until 1970. Some farmers also used sludge as fertilizer.

Wolverine Worldwide says Rose & Westra will handle the water testing and results should come back in about four weeks. The company also asks residents to contact Culligan at 616.791.7150 for bottled water while they wait for test results.

RESOURCES FOR BELMONT RESIDENTS:

If you are eligible for a whole-house water filtration system from Wolverine Worldwide, you can call 616.866.5627 or email HouseStreet@wwwinc.com.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Environmental Assistance Center can be reached at 1.800.662.9278.

Websites with additional information on the contamination:

***CORRECTION: An earlier story incorrectly identified the testing area running to Grand Rapids. We regret this error, which has since been corrected.***