GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD TV8)-Consumers Energy crews have restored more than 103,000 customers as of 11 AM on Monday after wind gusts over 65 mph swept through the state and took down nearly 2,000 wires. Nearly 100 additional crews were added to the system this morning, and crews are expected to restore a majority of remaining customers – mainly in rural areas – before voting begins on Tuesday.
“A number of remaining outages are in some of our rural regions in northeast Michigan and they’re more dispersed, which can mean some outages will take longer to fix,” said Roger Curtis, one of Consumers Energy’s Officers in Charge for the event. “But with favorable weather today, we are confident a large majority of customers will be restored by tomorrow. Our teams will continue to work as quickly and as safely as possible to get the light on for all of our customers.”
With midterm elections taking place tomorrow, Consumers Energy is also prioritizing restoring power to polling precincts that were impacted by the extreme weather. The energy provider worked with the Secretary of State’s office and local clerks to identify polling locations in its service territory affected by the storm. Those locations are being prioritized with the goal of restoring each voting location by 6 p.m. Monday.
Customers can report an outage and check the status of outage by visiting www.ConsumersEnergy.com/OutageCenter. They can also sign up to get outage alerts and restoration times sent to a phone, email or text message, Text ‘REG’ to 232273 or visit www.ConsumersEnergy.com/alerts.
Curtis urged people to keep safety a top priority and stay at least 25 feet away from downed power lines, keep children and/or pets away, and report the issue by calling 9-1-1 and Consumers Energy at 800-477-5050. Consumers Energy asks the public to keep a safe distance from crews.
Consumers Energy also asks the public to keep important safety tips in mind:
- Be alert to crews working along roads. Drivers should slow down or stop and wait for oncoming traffic to clear so they safely can go past workers on roadsides.
- Call 2-1-1 if you are looking for help connecting to resources that offer assistance in your community. 2-1-1 is a free statewide service.
- Never use a generator in an attached garage, basement, enclosed patio or near any air intakes. Doing so could cause a generator to produce hazardous levels of carbon monoxide, an odorless, colorless and deadly gas. Read more guidance on safe generator use here.
- 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.
- In some cases, the mast that holds the electric service wires to a home or business may have been damaged or torn away. Crews will reconnect the wires to a home, but only a licensed electrician can repair or replace a mast or a cable.
Consumers Energy is Michigan’s largest energy provider, providing natural gas and/or electricity to 6.8 million of the state’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.