New Years Eve Goal for BWL Power Restoration

By: Alyssa Fenske Email
By: Alyssa Fenske Email

LANSING (WILX)-- On day 9 of power outages in the Lansing area. Houses are still cold, patience is running out and people want answers.
As of late Monday afternoon, 800 Board of Water and Light customers are still without power.

One of the remaining BWL customers without power, Ronald Niedzielski,(lives on Brad Street) says he's been without power since last Saturday. He was told by a BWL customer service agent that he already had power, when clearly his whole street was still out.

"For them to tell me I had power since Christmas is a slap in my face," said Niedzielski.

It hasn't been easy for him and his neighbors.

"If something happens to somebody on this street because of that, I'm going to hold the city personally responsible."

BWL has 32 line crews working around the clock in 16 hour shifts. They believe the end is in sight.

"On December 31 at 11:59 pm is our plan to have all our services restored," said J. Peter Lark, BWL General Manager.

Lark says restoration has been taking so long because the closer BWL gets to finishing the harder it is to find out who doesn't have power.

"Until smart meters are in place we can never definitively know which home is on and which on is out. We are in the process of upgrading the system."

Because of the confusion if your power is still out you need to contact BWL either by phone or in person. You need to update BWL daily of your power outage situation.

Finishing before the new year is the goal, but for at least a few days afterwards BWL will be keeping all 32 crews in the area.

Larks says the aftermath of last Saturdays storm will not be easily forgotten. He even has kept some of the protesting signs from the 28th to remind himself of the customers need for information.

"I want to remember what happened and hope that it doesn't happen again," said Lark.

Lansing Police and Fire Departments are still doing door- to-door welfare checks in the dark areas. Anyone can call 9-1-1 to request a welfare check as the crisis continues.

The 800 customers without power doesn't include the nearly 500 single service reconnection requests. Those are the people whose connections are damaged, and must be repaired by an electrician before BWL can get your power back on.

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