Consumers Energy Encourages Public to Put Safety First as Power Continues to...

Consumers Energy Encourages Public to Put Safety First as Power Continues to be Restored after Weekend Storms

11:30 a.m. Update: Power Returned to Three Quarters of Affected Customers

WASHINGTON, D.C. – August 4, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — Consumers Energy today reminded the public to continue putting safety first as employees and contract crews return power to homes and businesses affected by storms that rolled through Michigan on Sunday.

“We have restored power to more than three quarters of the 162,000 customers that lost electric service since Sunday,” said Mary Palkovich, the company’s vice president of energy delivery. “At the same time, we want to encourage people to be careful, whether they are operating generators or driving on roads close to crews that are repairing broken poles and electric lines.”

Palkovich offered the following advice:

  • Be alert to crews working along roads. Drivers should slow down or stop and wait for oncoming traffic to clear so they safely can go past workers on roadsides.
  • 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. Never use a generator in an attached garage, basement or near any air intakes, and never fuel a generator when it is running.
  • Stay at least 25 feet away from downed power lines and anything they are touching and to immediately call 911 or Consumers Energy at 1-800-477-5050.

Fewer than 39,000 homes and businesses served by Consumers Energy remained without electric service as of 11:30 a.m., most of them in Northern Michigan. In all, more than 162,000 lost power at some point since Sunday morning.

Most affected customers should have their power restored by late Wednesday. 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.

“We are making good progress, but there is still significant work ahead in severely damaged areas,” Palkovich said. “We are grateful for the public’s patience and cooperation as that work continues.”

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.

Media toolkit
DOWNED WIRE SAFETY VIDEO:  Learn tips about the dangers and how to stay safe around downed power lines
www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEASqkonteI&list=PLmi8EGIdDXJgw6WdQeIT-Vl0zUC05U5yI

Media Contacts: Brian Wheeler, 517-788-2394, or Terry DeDoes, 517-374-2159

For more information about Consumers Energy, go to www.ConsumersEnergy.com.

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