Restoration Work Continues Across Consumers Energy’s Service Territory 4 a.m. Update
Jackson, Mich. Monday, November 18, 2013
Crews continue efforts to restore electric service across Consumers Energy’s service territory after winds exceeding 60 mph and severe thunderstorms resulted in widespread power outages across Lower Michigan.
Statewide, more than 213,900 Consumers Energy electric customers are without service as of 3:45 a.m. Monday.
“We have been working throughout the night to assess the damage from Sunday’s severe weather and make situations safe for the public,” said Mary Palkovich, the utility’s vice president of energy delivery. “We appreciate the patience of our customers as we work safely to restore power across the state. We have out-of-state contract crews arriving Monday to provide additional assistance.”
As of 3:45 a.m., areas most affected by electric interruptions were: Alcona (1,044), Allegan (6,234); Arenac (1,621), Barry (6,658), Bay (5,976), Branch (2,495), Calhoun (9,500), Clare (11,272), Clinton (3,370), Eaton (7,362), Emmet (1,308), Genesee (13,449), Gladwin (1,637), Hillsdale (2,347), Ingham (7,536), Ionia (3,573), Iosco (1,320), Isabella (1,427), Jackson (13,011), Kalamazoo (16,342), Kent (30,882), Lenawee (4,489), Livingston (2,237), Midland (11,121), Monroe (2,504), Montcalm (1,707), Muskegon (2,874), Newaygo (1,412), Oakland, (1,013), Otsego (1,143), Ottawa (5,940), Roscommon (1,831), Saginaw (3,391), Shiawassee (8,795), St. Joseph (2,400), VanBuren (5,708) and Washtenaw (2,311). Updated outage information is available at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outagemap.
A majority of customers who have been without electric service since Sunday afternoon should have their power restored by late Wednesday. Harder hit areas may not have their electric service restored until Thursday. Estimates will be updated as assessment and repairs continue. Additional storm activity may prolong restoration times.
From line workers to customer call center representatives and on-site damage assessors, more than 1,300 Consumers Energy and contract employees are working on storm restoration efforts across the state. Additional contract utility crews from outside Michigan, some from as far away as Kentucky, are expected to be in the state later Monday.
Consumers Energy cautions residents to stay at least 25 feet away from any downed wires and to report them immediately by calling 1-800-477-5050 or their local law enforcement agency. The utility also reminds customers to be alert to utility crews working along roads and urges drivers to take extra precautions in those situations. In particular, drivers should slow down or stop and wait for oncoming traffic to clear so they safely can go past utility workers and equipment on roadsides.
Customers who lose electricity for an extended period of time may want to investigate if public shelters are available. In most counties, residents can dial 2-1-1 to receive shelter information or to request assistance. Before going to a shelter, residents are asked to contact their local emergency management office to confirm the availability of services.
Customers who call Consumers Energy to report a power outage are encouraged to use the utility’s automated reporting option, available at 1-800-477-5050. The service provides restoration information for each substation and circuit, and can be used to report an outage. Outages can also be reported and restoration information obtained via Consumers Energy’s online outage map, at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outagemap. The outage map may be accessed by both computers and mobile devices. Additional storm and power outage information is available at Consumers Energy’s newly updated online outage center, www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outage.
If using a generator, contact a licensed electrician to ensure that it is properly connected and, for the safety of our line workers, make certain it is isolated from the utility’s electric distribution system. Never use a generator in an enclosed area or near any air intakes, and never fuel a generator when it is running.
In some cases, the mast which holds the electric service wires to a customer’s home or business may have been damaged or torn away. Utility crews will reconnect the wires to a home, but only a licensed electrician can repair or replace a mast or a cable.
Consumers Energy will trim or remove trees interfering with electric restoration activities. Once safe to do so, clean-up of debris from tree trimming or removal during a storm emergency is the responsibility of individual property owners.
Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest utility, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), providing natural gas and electricity to 6.6 million of the state’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.
For more information regarding Consumers Energy, go to: www.ConsumersEnergy.com or join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/consumersenergymichigan
Media Contacts: Roger Morgenstern, 616/530 4364 or Terry DeDoes, 517/374-2159
The next storm update will be at approximately 11:30 a.m.