WASHINGTON, D.C. – August 5, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — Favorable weather overnight has allowed progress to continue on restoring the remaining customers in northern Michigan hardest hit by Sunday’s severe weather.
As of 4 a.m., approximately 19,000 Consumers Energy customers remained without power across Michigan. Almost all of the customers are located north of U.S. 10, where Sunday’s series of severe thunderstorms caused the most damage. More than 164,000 customers lost power during the storms.
“The favorable weather overnight allowed continued progress on our storm restoration efforts,” said Mary Palkovich, Consumers Energy vice president of energy delivery. “We appreciate the hard work and long hours the men and women have been putting in the last several days to get the lights back on for our customers. And we thank our customers’ continued patience as we work safely to get the job done.”
All of the additional crews who have wrapped up restoration work downstate are expected to be working in northern Michigan shortly after daybreak. From lineworkers to customer service representatives, more than 1,600 Consumers Energy and contract personnel have been engaged in the restoration effort, including crews from Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky.
Most affected customers should have their power restored by late today. In Leelanau, Grand Traverse and Ogemaw counties, complete restoration is expected to be late Thursday. The public is encouraged to check for updated restoration information at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/outagemap.
Palkovich said to remain aware of these important facts:
· Be alert to crews working along roads. This is especially important as large numbers of crews are working in concentrated areas of northern Michigan. Drivers should slow down or stop and wait for oncoming traffic to clear so they safely can go past workers on roadsides.
· Stay at least 25 feet away from downed power lines and anything they are touching. If you see a downed wire, immediately call 911 and Consumers Energy at 1-800-477-5050. There is a significant amount of debris and numerous downed wires in these hard hit areas. The public should always assume that a downed wire is energized.
· Proper installation and operation of emergency generators is a necessity. If using a generator, contact a licensed electrician to ensure that it is properly connected and, for the safety of our line workers and first responders, make certain it is isolated from the company’s electric distribution system. If it is not properly isolated, electricity can be “back fed” over the company’s power lines, creating a hazard to anyone who comes in contact with nearby wires. Never use a generator in an attached garage, basement or near any air intakes, and never fuel a generator when it is running. Proper ventilation will eliminate the creation of dangerous carbon monoxide, an odorless, colorless gas which can be deadly.
As of 4 a.m., Counties most affected by electric interruptions were Antrim (1,146); Arenac (528); Crawford (523); Gladwin (698); Grand Traverse (1,337); Iosco (1,458); Kalkaska (1,910); Leelanau (5,425); Missaukee (774); Ogemaw (5,671); Oscoda (883) and Roscommon (1,682).
Residents with concerns about staying in their home during an extended outage are encouraged to call 2-1-1 to learn about available resources, including shelters.
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.
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Media Contacts: Roger Morgenstern, 616-530-4364, or Terry DeDoes, 517-374-2159
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For more information about Consumers Energy, go to www.ConsumersEnergy.com.