Consumers Energy Focusing on Safety as Work Continues to Restore Power after Catastrophic Michigan Storm
Jackson, Mich. Monday, November 18, 2013
4:30 p.m. Update
Consumers Energy crews are working throughout Michigan to restore power to homes and businesses affected by Sunday’s catastrophic storm. Power returned to thousands of customers Monday, while officials remind the public to be careful around fallen power lines.
“This catastrophic storm left its mark across Michigan. Still, we are making progress in starting to restore power across the state,” said Mary Palkovich, Consumers Energy’s vice president of energy delivery. “We appreciate our customers’ patience as employees work in still-challenging conditions, and we continue to remind the public to be safe and to stay away from downed power lines.”
Crews continue to restore electric service across Consumers Energy’s service territory after winds exceeding 60 mph and severe thunderstorms resulted in widespread power outages across the Lower Peninsula. On Monday, contractors from as far away as Kentucky began arriving in Michigan to assist Consumers Energy employees in restoring power.
Statewide, more than 206,000 Consumers Energy electric customers are without service as of 4:15 p.m. Monday. Since noon Sunday, 275,000 customers have been impacted by the storm.
As of 3:30 p.m., areas most affected by electric interruptions were: Alcona (6,256), Allegan (7,721); Arenac (1,680), Barry (9,830), Bay (6,044), Branch (2,585), Calhoun (10,054), Clare (9,911), Clinton (3,392), Eaton (5,070), Emmet (1,443), Genesee (18,078), Gladwin (1,884), Hillsdale (2,845), Ingham (8,341), Ionia (3,150), Iosco (4,759), Isabella (1,365), Jackson (12,348), Kalamazoo (13,440), Kent (17,177), Lenawee (3,693), Livingston (2,123), Mecosta (1,246), Midland (11,379), Monroe (2,548), Montcalm (2,257), Muskegon (1,498), Newaygo (2,672), Ogemaw (1,731), Oscoda (1,400), Ottawa (5,258), Roscommon (3,956), Saginaw (3,256), Shiawassee (8,893), St. Joseph (1,392), VanBuren (4,724) and Washtenaw (2,347). Updated outage information is available at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outagemap.
Because of the magnitude of the damage, some customers who have been without electric service since Sunday afternoon may not have their power restored until late Friday. Harder hit areas may not have their electric service restored until Saturday. Estimates will be updated as assessment and repairs continue.
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.
People are encouraged to call 1-800-477-5050 or go online to www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outage to report a power outage. Check Consumers Energy’s online outage map, at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outagemap for restoration information for each substation and circuit. The map may be accessed by computers and mobile devices.
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.
PHOTOS: See images of damage from the weekend’s storm: http://www.flickr.com/photos/consumersenergy/sets/72157634342591265/
VIDEO: How Consumers Energy restores power: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTRuTe8_57Y
For more information regarding Consumers Energy, go to: www.ConsumersEnergy.com or join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/consumersenergymichigan
Media Contacts: Brian Wheeler, 517-788-2394,or Terry DeDoes, 517/374-2159
The next storm update will be issued at approximately 9:30 p.m.