Power failures leave Metro Detroit neighborhoods underwater again

Nearly one million Michigan households lost power

Overnight storms caused significant power outages across Metro Detroit and made freeways impassable for Thursday’s morning commute.
Overnight storms caused significant power outages across Metro Detroit and made freeways impassable for Thursday’s morning commute.

DETROIT – Overnight storms caused significant power outages across Metro Detroit and made freeways impassable for Thursday’s morning commute.

More: Massive power outages hit Michigan, nearing historic 2017 wind storm totals

The nonstop rain and heavy winds caused power outages that knocked out pumps that were already overwhelmed.

Water filled both sides of I-75 between McNichols and Seven Mile roads Thursday morning. Other flooded roads included the Davison Freeway, I-696 and more.

DTE Energy held a press conference in Oak Park Thursday to discuss the power problems that knocked out pumps along the freeways.

Read: Massive power outages hit Michigan, nearing historic 2017 wind storm totals

According to the Michigan Department of Transportation, the pumps stopped working after power was lost across Metro Detroit. Officials said their crews scrambled to hook up massive generators, but only had four-to-six on hand at any given time. Restarting the pumps is a long process that require a team of specially trained technicians and not all pump houses work the same.

“It’s not like we can just go to Home Depot and buy a generator and you pull it out a little trailer and you set it next to the building and you hook it up,” said Diane Cross, with MDOT. “It’s not like that. It’s much more complicated.”

In neighborhoods across Metro Detroit, residents are frustrated with dealing with more water in the streets less than a month since the last flood.

The Great Lakes Water Authority said none of their pumps failed and that its system is “prepared for currently forecasted storms.”

Thursday’s floods happened on the seventh anniversary of the devastating 2014 floods, that were considered to be a once-in-a-generation event.

Read: Great Flood of 2014: How historic was it?


About the Authors:

Grant comes to Local 4 from Oklahoma City. He joins the news team as co-anchor of Local 4 News Today weekend mornings and is a general assignment reporter.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.