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Outage updates after severe thunderstorms blast southern Michigan

A fallen tree limb blocks a street in Grosse Pointe Park, Mich., after a severe storm, Wednesday, July 26, 2033. (AP Photo/Ed White)
Ed White/AP
A fallen tree limb blocks a street in Grosse Pointe Park, Mich., after a severe storm, Wednesday, July 26, 2033. (AP Photo/Ed White)

Updated 10:48 a.m.

Severe thunderstorms struck southern Michigan on Wednesday, uprooting trees, downing branches and power lines and cutting electricity for more than customers, utilities and others reported.

DTE Energy reported more than 176,000 customers without power as of 10:40 a.m., and Consumers Energy reported nearly 22,000 without service.

On its online outage center, DTE said it expects to have power back for 95% of the customers affected by the end of the day Saturday. A Consumers Energy spokesperson told Michigan Radio the company expects to complete its repairs Thursday night.

Consumers Energy spokesperson Katie Carey joined Michigan Radio's Doug Tribou to discuss the storms and repair work.

The National Weather Service reported trees and limbs had fallen in the Detroit area, Ann Arbor and other locations across southern Michigan.

The weather service measured a 67 mph (107.83 kilometer-per-hour) wind gust in the Detroit suburb of Romulus.

DTE Energy and Consumers Energy urge the public to keep these important storm safety tips in mind:

  • Stay at least 25 feet away from downed wires, keep children or pets away, and report the issue by calling 9-1-1.
  • A portable generator should be placed at least 25 feet away from any doors, windows or fresh air intakes. Never operate a generator inside your home, garage, basement or enclosed area. Proper ventilation is critical.
  • 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.
  • Always heed the warning of yellow caution tape, which indicates there is a downed power line in the area. DO NOT CROSS YELLOW CAUTION TAPE. 
  • Clean up of fallen branches and trees can wait... and remember that fallen wires can be hidden in debris.
  • Keep children and pets indoors until our crews can address all downed wires.

Editor's note: DTE Energy and Consumers Energy are among Michigan Radio's corporate sponsors.

The Associated Press is an independent global news organization dedicated to factual reporting.
Katheryne Friske is the weekend morning host and producer for All Things Considered.
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