Approximately 7,600 Consumers Energy electric customers are without service due to the winter storm that began on Friday afternoon. Since that time, more than 183,000 customers have been affected by weather related outages.
The approximate numbers of Consumers Energy electric customers remaining without service in the following counties are as follows: Antrim (500); Benzie (1,800); Grand Traverse (790); Kalkaska (125); Leelanau (2,600); Manistee (400); Missaukee (60); Oscoda (560) and Wexford (400).
“We sincerely appreciate the patience of our customers during this winter storm event as we work to restore electric service in a safe and timely manner,” said Garrick Rochow, vice president of energy delivery for the utility. “The destructive nature of this storm has challenged our crews as we continue to restore and rebuild our facilities.”
The utility is working cooperatively with a number of agencies such as the American Red Cross and Salvation Army that have opened shelters in northern Michigan counties. (Details regarding these shelters are below.) Customers who need shelter should call their local emergency management agency or 211 for a list of available services in their area. Residents who have senior neighbors or those with special needs are also encouraged to check on them during this emergency.
Approximately 340 utility, line clearing and contract crews, including additional crews from Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Pennsylvania, will continue to work to restore power. The majority of customers are expected to be restored today. Some customers in the hardest-hit counties, including Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Leelanau and Manistee, may not receive electric service until Wednesday. Estimates will be updated as assessment and repairs continue.
Consumers Energy cautions area residents to avoid touching any downed wires and to report them immediately by calling 1-800-477-5050, or your local law enforcement agency.
Customers who call Consumers Energy to report no power 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.
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 and never fuel a generator when it is running.
In some cases, the mast which holds the electric service wires to your home or business may have been damaged or torn away from the home. Utility crews will reconnect the wires to your 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. Clean up of debris from tree trimming or removal during a storm emergency is the responsibility of individual property owners.
Northern Michigan Shelters
Commission on Aging, 308 E. Cayuga Street, Bellaire
Benzie Bus Station, 14150 US 31, Beulah
Michelson United Methodist Church, 100 Michigan Avenue, Grayling
Grand Traverse Co.
Salvation Army, 1239 Barlow Street, Traverse City
Suttons Bay Fire Department, 201 St. Mary’s Street, Suttons Bay
Empire Township Hall, 11518 LaCore Street, Empire
*Residents needing shelter accommodations should call the Red Cross at 231-753-8891 or go to: www.redcross.org