MIDLAND, Mich.—Major flooding is impacting Dow Inc.'s operations at its headquarters site in Midland after two dams near the city failed on May 19.
In a statement released shortly before noon Eastern time on May 20, Dow said its local emergency operations center is fully activated and is implementing its flood preparedness plan.
It also partnered with the U.S. Coast Guard to activate emergency plans when floodwaters commingled with on-site containment ponds.
Officials added that all operating units on site have been safely shut down, except for facilities needed for safely managing chemical containment, and all railcars are secured.
"Only essential staff are onsite to monitor and manage the situation with no reported employee injuries," officials said.
An estimated 10,000 residents near Midland were told to evacuate when the dams failed followed several days of heavy rain. State officials expected downtown Midland could be under nine feet of water later in the day on May 20.
Dow officials said on Facebook that the firm's Midland-based Michigan Operations "has activated their emergency operations center and will be adjusting operations as a result of current flood stage conditions."
"Dow Michigan Operations is working with its tenants and Midland County officials and will continue to closely monitor the water levels on the Tittabawassee River," they added. "As always, our first priority is the safety and security of our employees and community."
A May 19 post on the city of Midland's website said that the Edenville Dam had failed, and water overwhelmed a dam in Sanford and that residents of Edenville Township and the village of Sanford should evacuate immediately. Residents were advised to seek higher ground as far east and west of the Tittabawassee River as possible.
Midland is a city of 42,000 in central Michigan. Dow, one of the world's largest plastics and chemicals makers, has operated in Michigan since 1897.
Dow's Michigan Operations include production of plastics and specialty chemicals, as well as major R&D assets. Several other firms have operations at the Dow complex, including DuPont, Corteva Agriscience, Trinseo and SK Saran.