White foam at Detroit-Melvindale border ID'd

Sarah Rahal
The Detroit News

Authorities have found the cause of a mysterious foam that seeped onto the road at the Detroit-Melvindale border Monday

The Michigan Department of Environmental Equality said the likely cause of the white foam came from a parking lot that was newly resurfaced near Schaefer and Dix. 

"At this point, we've identified the source as the outcome of a surface coating applied to the parking lot," said Melinda Steffler, a MDEQ spokeswoman.

Steffler said runoff from the coating used to resurface the parking lot washed into a catch basin and started to foam and soon extended out of the sewer drain. 

"Samples have been taken, but it seems like the most likely cause, but are still working to identify the nature of the coating of the parking lot so we can prevent this from happening again," Steffler said. 

It's unclear whether the foam is dangerous. The MDEQ is waiting for the safety data sheet from the company that makes the solvent that washed off. 

In the meantime, the company is working with Wayne County to reduce the foam in the catch basin to prevent it from foaming up during the next rain, Steffler said. 

The foam-like substance first emerged in the same area under a viaduct near Interstate 75 on July 31.


Twitter: @SarahRahal_