DTE: 89,000 people without power because of storm

Posted at 10:28 PM, Sep 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-22 22:28:39-04

(WXYZ) — DTE says the rain and wind moving through metro Detroit since Tuesday left around 121,000 people in the dark as of 9:30 p.m. Wednesday.

That number has gone down since then, with DTE's outage map showing over 89,000 people without power as of 10:30 p.m.

DTE says this is the 12th storm to impact more than 25,000 customers in the past three months.

Here is DTE's full statement on the storm's effects:

As of 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 22, 2021, approximately 121,000 DTE Energy customers have been affected by another round of severe weather that has been hitting southeast Michigan the last 24 hours – the 12th storm (a weather event that impacts more than 25,000 customers) in the past three months.

The high winds and heavy rain caused damage to electrical equipment and knocked down more than 1,100 power lines in the last 24 hours. DTE teams will be working throughout the night to secure power lines, begin damage assessment and restore customers. We have secured more than 650 contract crews to help with restoration including out-of-state linemen from Ohio, New York, Tennessee and Canada.

As of this evening, we expect to restore 95% of customers impacted by the weather systems in the last 24 hours by end of day Friday. More specific restoration estimates will be available once the weather moves out of the area, damage assessment is complete, and crews are assigned tomorrow morning. In order to provide customers with more accurate information, the outage map and restoration estimates will be updated periodically as our teams verify information across several systems.

Safety for our crews and the community is our top priority. We encourage everyone to be careful as they head outside. Look up to see what’s down - downed lines may be hidden by storm debris. Stay at least 20 feet away from downed power lines and don’t touch anything they may be in contact with – always consider them live and dangerous. Customers should also heed the warning of yellow caution tape, which indicates there is a downed power line in the area. DO NOT CROSS YELLOW CAUTION TAPE.

Please report outages or downed power lines online at or with the DTE Energy Mobile app.

Storm tips:

    • Never drive across a downed power line. If a power line falls on your vehicle, remain inside until help arrives.
    • 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.