DTE Energy

(Photo: Charlie Langton/WWJ)

DTE Says Power Restored To 'Vast Majority Of Customers' After Damaging Storms

"It's crazy; I can't do another night," says one Detroiter still waiting

July 24, 2019 - 4:38 pm

DETROIT (WWJ) - Five days after severe weather left hundreds of thousands of DTE Energy cusomers without power in metro Detroit, the utility says it has restored service to a "vast majority of customers."

Around 600,000 homes and businesses were knocked off the grid during weekend storms that DTE called the second most damaging in the company's history.

On Wednesday, DTE said there were still several thousand scattered outages throughout southeast Michigan; some in areas that are not easily accessible to DTE trucks and crews. More than 1,100 DTE employees and 1,000 out-of-state line workers, as well as 800 tree trimming crews would continue working to restore the remaining outages by end of the day, the utility said.

"We are working as quickly and as safely as we can," said Heather Rivard, Senior Vice President of Electric Distribution for DTE., who blamed about two-thirds of the outages on overgrown trees.

Photo: Jon Hewett / WWJ
As a crew from Chicago worked to remove downed tree limbs from power lines on Detroit's northwest side, Wednesday afternoon, residents still in the dark watched with hopeful eyes.

"I'm understanding that we do need more crew members to help, and I'm understanding that it's just nature," said Hershey Monroe, speaking to WWJ's Jon Hewett on her porch on Warwick Street.

On the other hand, she added: "I am frustrated because I was hot, can't sleep at night and our food is spoiled." 

Across the street, Rickea Hudson was also still waiting.

"I've got my porch light on, so when the power do pop back on I know I've got power," she said. "But it's crazy; I can't do another night."

Check DTE's power outage map HERE.

Those who were affected by the outage should note that there's some financial relief available to those who qualify. 

The Michigan Attorney General's Office this week reminded DTE and Consumers Energy customers that some who lost power may be eligible for an account credit.

The Michigan Public Service Commission says as this past week’s outages are considered a catastrophic event, which occurs when more than 10 percent of a utility’s customers affected). As such, a customer needs to have been without power for at least 120 hours, rather than the usual 16 hours, to qualify for a $25 credit. 

Customers should call their utility to determine whether or they are eligible.  Also, check out the tip sheet at this link

Online forms are available here: DTE customer outage credit form - Consumers customer outage form