Unknown contaminants spill into Grand River near Kitchener

KITCHENER – Cleanup crews have been working to cleanup a spill of an unknown contaminant into the Grand River near Kitchener this weekend.

Ministry of the Environment officials informed Kitchener city officials after they received a tip about the spill from a resident.

Waterloo’s Region Record reported a significant quantity of an unconfirmed contaminant was spilled.

Approximately 250 meters along the Grand River shoreline have been polluted.

City officials have not yet determined the source of the spill but say it has come from the city’s sewer system.

Michael Montour, Director of Six Nations Public Works, said in an emailed statement to the Two Row Times that precautions were made to ensure Ohsweken water supply was protected.


Montour said, “Our water plant operators are notified through Spills Action of Spills impacting the Grand River. In this case our Water Sewer Staff were promptly notified, and are satisfied that the contaminant measures taken in response to the spill are adequate. As with any type of oil spill it tends to remain at the surface, whereas our intake draws from the depths below and we are not likely to see any impact. However our system would remove any amounts that may make it this far downstream. Our water plant operators are on top of it and getting continuous updates on the matter.”

A video of the booms installed along the Grand River to contain the contaminant was posted to YouTube by Louisette Lanteigne on Sunday.

Footage shows a large area of deforestation along the banks of the Grand that was required to access the area of the spill and large yellow booms installed along a large area of shoreline to the Grand.

Footage also captured the trail of the black contaminant, which Lanteigne described as smelly, thick and sticky.

The Grand River is the source drinking water for Brantford, Brant County and Six Nations of the Grand River territory.

More information will be updated to this story as it comes available.

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