Power Could Be Off For Days Following Ice Storm

DETROIT (WWJ) – About 225,000 power outages remain following a weekend ice storm that blacked out at least 488,000 homes and businesses across the state.

DTE Energy spokesperson Scott Simons said their crews are making progress, with the number of outages down to 55,000 customers. A majority of the outages are in Oakland, Lapeer and Livingston counties.

“We should have the vast majority of our customers back by late Tuesday,” he said.

About 150,000 DTE customers were impacted by the storm. Simons said crews are working 16-hour shifts around the clock to restore power. Nearly 450 linemen from utilities in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Indiana, Illinois and Ohio are assisting with restoration efforts.

Consumers Energy, meanwhile, said 174,000 of their customers are still offline and restoration efforts are progressing — but slowly. Spokesperson Debra Dodd said the storm was catastrophic, knocking out power of 300,000 customers.

“It is the worst Christmas week storm in our 126 year history,” she said. “Crews are coming from 11 states, as far away as South Carolina and Tennessee, so we’re getting everybody onboard that we can so we can try to get people restored as quickly as possible.”

Dodd said with the number of outages and the ice that is just hanging on the lines, it could be Saturday before everyone’s lights are back on.

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