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Thousands of Consumers Energy customers without power


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A traffic light was out late Sunday morning at the intersection of Grand River Avenue and Northwind Drive in East Lansing.

LANSING — If you’re one of Consumers Energy’s 1.8 million customers and have experienced a weather-related power outage today, you may have to practice some patience. 

The utility that serves several communities outside Lansing’s city limits has reported thousands of outages in the Okemos, Holt, Eaton Rapids and Olivet areas. 

Consumers Energy’s online outage map reported at 4 p.m. today there were about 35,000 customers statewide affected.

RELATED:

45 mph winds, up to 1/2 inch of ice expected Sunday

Those who have experienced outages are expected to regain power by 11 p.m. Monday, said Terry DeDoes, a utility spokesperson. 

DeDoes said the utility has a “full contingent” of tree trimming crews at affected areas. He didn’t know, as of 1:30 p.m., how many had been dispatched to the Lansing region. 

At that time, DeDoes said the utility had restored power to 77,000 of the 118,000 customers statewide who experienced outages since 4 a.m. Saturday. 

Lansing’s Board of Water of Light, as of 3:30 p.m., reported there were 376 customers without power.

Dick Peffley, BWL’s general manager, said this afternoon most outages took place in Delta Township and were caused by downed trees.

Peffley expressed optimism that all customers will get their power restored quickly. He said one circuit was out that, once fixed, was expected to restore power to about 800 customers. 

“We’ll work around the clock until we get them restored,” Peffley said. 

Peffley expected to have about 20 three-member forestry crews out in the field today working with other BWL employees. 

BWL starts on July 1 the fifth year of a tree-trimming program which began after the 2013 ice storm.

Crews are about three months ahead of schedule in Delta Township but couldn’t work fast enough to prepare for the storm, Peffley said. 

BWL’s five-year program started after the 2013 ice storm, Peffley said, because the utility didn’t have enough forestry crews to prevent downed trees from causing outages.

Peffley was named BWL’s general manager in 2015. 

Slow weather relief

Expect icy, slushy and windy conditions in the Lasing region to last until about noon Monday, according to the National Weather Service’s Grand Rapids office. 

The good news: There isn’t expected to be much ice accumulation overnight, said Wayne Hoepner, a Grand Rapids meteorologist. 

“It’s basically a mix of rain and snow into Monday,” Hoepner said. 

As of 11 a.m., today the weather service reported there had been about two-tenths of an inch of ice on the roads over a 24-hour span that ended at 8 a.m.

During that same period, the weather service reported the Lansing region had .86 inches of rain. 

“Hopefully the temperature will be going up soon and it will change to regular rain, Hoepner said. 

Hoepner said the temperature at 11 a.m. was reported as 31 degrees at Lansing’s Capital Region International Airport. 

In downtown Lansing, at that time, the temperature reported at the Boji Tower, across from the State Capitol, was 25 degrees. 

Slick humor

Dangerous weather conditions over the weekend didn’t stop a local baseball team from sharing some laughs.  

The Lansing Lugnuts posted a photo Sunday morning on its Twitter page that showed Cooley Law School Stadium’s field covered in ice. 

The message attached to this photo: “Hey @DetroitRedWings, any chance you guys are available? We can make this work.”

Eric Lacy is a reporter for the Lansing State Journal. Contact him at 517-377-1206 or elacy@lsj.com. Follow him on Twitter @EricLacy.

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