DETROIT – About 135,000 DTE Energy customers remain without power two days after an April ice storm moved through Michigan.
On Tuesday morning, there were 145,000 without power. By late Tuesday morning, that number dropped to 135,000.
In a statement Tuesday morning the electric company said the weekend storm impacted a total 390,000 of its customers. At one point more than 300,000 customer were without power after ice snapped tree branches and downed power lines throughout southeastern Michigan.
"We expect to have 90 percent of total customers impacted restored by the end of the day, along with most schools that remain without power," reads a statement from DTE on Tuesday morning.
DTE said it will have over 1,000 workers in the field helping to restore power to customers Tuesday, along with an expected 600 workers from five other states – Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee.
How to contact DTE
Customers have three ways to contact DTE when they lose power or see a downed power line:
DTE offers these storm power outage tips:
- Always operate generators outdoors to avoid dangerous buildup of toxic fumes.
- Don’t open refrigerators or freezers more often than absolutely necessary. A closed refrigerator will stay cold for 12 hours. Kept closed, a well-filled freezer will preserve food for two days.
- Turn off or unplug all appliances to prevent an electrical overload when power is restored. Leave on one light switch to indicate when power is restored.
- If a customer is elderly or has a medical condition that would be adversely impacted by a power outage, they should try to make alternative accommodations with family or friends.
- During low-voltage conditions – when lights are dim and television pictures are smaller – shut off motor-driven appliances such as refrigerators to prevent overheating and possible damage. Sensitive electronic devices also should be unplugged.
- Stay out of flooded or damp basements or other areas if water is in contact with outlets or any electrically-operated appliance. The water or moisture may serve as a conductor of electricity. This can cause serious or even fatal injury.
- Assemble an emergency kit. It should include a battery-powered radio, a flashlight and candles, extra batteries, a first-aid kit, a fire extinguisher, bottled water and non-perishable food.
- Customers who depend on electrically powered medical equipment should ask their physician about an emergency battery back-up system. If a customer is elderly or has a medical condition that would be adversely impacted by a power outage, they should develop an emergency plan that allows for alternative accommodations with family or friends.
- Keep a corded or cell phone on hand because a cordless telephone needs electricity to operate. Also, customers should learn how to manually open automated garage doors.
- Customers who depend on a well for drinking water need to plan ahead on how they will obtain water. Store containers of water for cooking and washing.
Winter weather persists in Michigan
As DTE Energy works to restore power, crews continue to deal with wintry weather. Metro Detroit was placed under a Winter Weather Advisory on Tuesday morning as snow and ice made for a messy commute.
Meteorologist Brandon Roux said another wave of snow will begin to move over Lake Huron later Tuesday afternoon and evening "and it could bring a dusting to an inch of snow to parts of the Thumb and Southern Ontario closer to Lake Huron, while other parts of our North Zone could get a dusting later today."