After two weeks and 1,100 evacuations, mishap tests Flat Rock’s loyalty to Ford

Read the full story at Bridge Michigan.

A children’s entertainer by trade, Janice Priest is used to forcing smiles. 

But it’s become impossible to conceal her frustration with how Ford Motor Co. and government agencies have handled the slow-moving public health emergency that prompted her to rush home from the Michigan State Fair to evacuate her family from their house on a quiet Flat Rock cul-de-sac. 

That was 12 days ago, when health officials recommended evacuation of 1,100 homes in the community of about 10,000 residents in southern Wayne County.

Priest still has no idea when it will be safe to return. 

She celebrated her 53rd birthday last week from the Southgate Holiday Inn Express. That’s where she, her husband and three children have lived from suitcases and eaten microwave dinners to avoid the hazardous fumes that may still be in their house after a gas spill of 1,400 gallons entered the city’s sewers late last month from a pipe at the Ford Flat Rock Assembly Plant.

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