Flint Water Emergency – FAQ

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The Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce shares the widespread community concern about Flint’s ongoing water emergency. The reality and perception of the situation continues to garner attention statewide and nationally from multiple news outlets.

In collaboration with our partners, the Chamber has compiled a list of frequently asked questions as well as additional information to assist FGCC members, and the community at-large, in understanding the current situation and how they can help.

What is being done?

  • The City of Flint is coordinating emergency response efforts with Genesee County and the State of Michigan to remedy the city’s water emergency. Gov. Snyder has asked the state legislature for $28 million to aid the water emergency.
  • President Obama also declared a federal emergency in Flint, freeing up to $5 million in federal aid to immediately assist with the public health crisis. On January 19, the White House appointed an official from the Department of Health and Human Services to coordinate the government’s response.

Does the Flint water emergency apply to all of Genesee County?

  • No. The Genesee County municipalities outside of Flint are on different water systems. Some receive water from the county water system while others draw water from community wells. However, there are still some Flint water customers who live beyond city limits and should have their water tested. For a list of these addresses, click here.

Where can I get my water tested?

  • You may request free testing by a regulatory official. To schedule a free collection and analysis of your food establishment’s water for lead, call 1-800-292-3939, M-F, and state you’re a “Flint food establishment requesting a water test.” Be prepared to provide a sampling time when your entire water system won’t have been used for at least 6 hours. Sampling appointments between 5 a.m. and 4 p.m. are available.  Click here for important information.

Who can I call if I have questions?

  • Call 2-1-1. The 2-1-1 service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The alternate number is 866-561-2500.

How can I help?

  • As a result of the coordinated efforts at the local, state and federal levels, Flint now has in place a supply chain to deliver bottled water, faucet filters and testing kits to all city residents. There is an ample supply of bottled water and filters to meet the needs of residents at this time.
  • The greatest need at this point is for cash donations and volunteers to assist with the distribution efforts. Currently, there’s a need for about 100 volunteers a day to assist with these efforts.

Where do I go to volunteer?

  • If you’re interested in volunteering, register at the American Red Cross Volunteer Reception Center, 1401 S Grand Traverse St. You must be at least 18 years old and capable of lifting 50 pounds. High school students are not eligible, even with parental consent.
  • You should know that volunteers that do door-to-door canvassing do not need to enter homes.

Where can I make a cash donation?

  • The Flint Child Health & Development Fund has been established to support the delivery of critical public health, medical, and community-based services and interventions that address and mitigate the short and long term impacts experienced by Flint families exposed to lead as the result of the water crisis. The fund is administered by the Community Foundation of Greater Flint and donations are tax-deductible.
  • To donate, go to www.FlintKids.org.

I still want to donate water to the relief effort. Where can I donate it?

  • Small Quantities (under 20 cases):
    – Weekdays – Catholic Charities, 517 E. Fifth Ave.
    – Contacts: Mary Stevenson (810)232-9950, ext. 228 or Chrissy Cooper, ext. 325
    – Weekends – American Red Cross, 1401 S Grand Traverse St.
  • Large Quantities (over 20 cases or a pallet):
    – Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, 2312 Lapeer Road
    – Contact: Tina Martinez (810)396-0230

Where can I find more information?

Does the City of Flint draw water from the Flint River?

  • No. The City of Flint water comes from Lake Huron. The treated water is piped in from the Detroit Water and Sewage Department.

Isn’t Flint building a new water pipeline? How will that project affect the water situation?

  • Flint is a member of the Karegnondi Water Authority (KWA), which will draw from Lake Huron once the project is completed later this year. The water delivered to Flint residents via the KWA pipeline will be treated at the Flint Water Treatment Plant.
  • Local and state authorities will continue to closely monitor the water quality after Flint begins using water supplied by the KWA.

How is the water emergency affecting Flint’s business climate?

  • We know some businesses are incurring extra expense as a result of the water emergency. Anecdotally, we are hearing that some restaurants and other businesses have begun to feel a financial impact.
  • To gain a more thorough understanding, we are surveying our members about how they’ve been affected.
  • In the meantime, businesses are taking the appropriate precautions to ensure their employees and customers have safe water.
  • But Flint & Genesee County remain open for business and tourism. As a Chamber, we are focused on moving our region forward.