Power outages follow strong winds in Mid-Michigan
As of 10:30 p.m., 450 outages were reported by Consumers Energy.
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - First Alert Meteorologist Colton Cichoracki said isolated power outages and minor tree damage were possible Thursday, and both sides of that prediction panned out.
Eastbound I-96 in Lansing was closed briefly due to a downed tree. The Michigan Department of Transportation said the tree shut down traffic completely on that side of the highway, but crews were able to get it cleared quickly.
Winds that reached 50 mph knocked out power in patches of Mid-Michigan on Thursday. As of 10:30 p.m., 450 outages were reported by Consumers Energy.
Lawmakers to utilities: ‘Keep the power on or pay up’
Consumer’s Energy says that these types of outages are normal, since the wind can knock over old trees, which then bring down power lines with their weight. Yet some lawmakers say the frequency and duration of the outages are unacceptable.
State Representative Abraham Aiyash said, “We pay the highest residential electricity rates in the nation for reliability that is nearly the worst.”
Consumers Energy representatives say they have a plan that calls for $5.4 billion over the next five years to reduce power outages with investments such as trimming trees, replacing poles and upgrading equipment to a higher, more resilient standard.
Background: Consumers Energy prepared for potential outages
Consumers Energy’s outage map shows crews assigned to the largest affected areas.
Remember If you see or suspect a downed power line, stay at least 25 feet away and keep children and pets away. If you see a downed power line, call 911 before contacting Consumers Energy at 800-477-5050 or the Lansing Board of Water and Light by calling 877-295-5001.
Always assume a wire is dangerous, even if it’s lying still.
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