W. MI storm leads to outages, washout, close calls

Weather

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A large storm system pummeled West Michigan with strong winds and heavy rains Sunday night, downing trees, snapping power lines and flooding roads.

A 69 wind gust was recorded at Grand Haven, a 69 mph gust at Muskegon and 53 mph south of Fremont, Storm Team 8 says.

Monday revealed the widespread storm damage.

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At Conestoga Grand River Campground in Coopersville, a tree came down on a camper that contained an infant. Officials say the baby was not hurt.

In Grand Rapids, a massive tree snapped and fell onto Faith United Methodist off 7th Street NW, and Burton Street between Division and Jefferson avenues closed because of flooding. A few vehicles that tried to drive through the standing water got stuck.

At least 5 inches of rain also led to a washout on North Green Creek Road in Dalton Township, north of Muskegon.

“That’s just, wow. There goes the bridge. That’ll shut down traffic for a while,” said Wendel Conarty, who lives nearby.

“I’ve been here since ’75 (and) that bridge is probably original – I’ve never seen them change nothing. They’re going to change it now,” he added with a laugh.

Consumers Energy said more than 61,000 customers were without service early Monday morning, when power outages peaked. Most customers had power back by the end of the day, but Consumers warned the hardest-hit areas wouldn’t be back online until midday Tuesday.

Consumers reminded people to stay away from downed power lines. If you see one, call 911 and then Consumers at 800.477.5050. 

Storm sirens sounded in northeast Ottawa County around 10:20 p.m. Ottawa County Emergency Management said those sirens were to warn of damaging winds.

So far, there are no reports of injuries caused by the storm.

The National Weather Service issued flood advisories for Kent and Muskegon counties, but those have since expired. Beach Hazard statements are in effect for the lakeshore from Manistee to South Haven.

Drivers are also reminded to be alert to Consumers crews working along roads. 

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