Lawmakers on power companies restoration efforts from wind storm: “I think they responded very well”

LANSING, MI (WLNS) – It’s been named as one of the worst wind storm’s our state has seen since the 90’s.

When the wicked wind storm blew through our state last week, between Consumers Energy, DTE and the Lansing Board of Water and Light, outage maps were lit up like Christmas trees.

Tens of thousands of people were without power for several days, causing frustration among many.

“Five hours without power is a pain,” Senator Mike Nofs R-Battle Creek said. “Especially when you’re expecting to do something that day and/or like I said, you have breathing machines that depend on it at home.”

Now, was this something we could have avoided? Probably not; But what about how it was handled afterwards?

6 News Capitol Correspondent Tim Skubick asked our state legislators if they think that power companies need to investigate what many see as a delay in getting power restored.

“I think this was a unique happening, we had 50 mile per hour winds and this destroyed the whole state not just one small area like we usually have. I think they responded very well,” Senator Rick Jones R-Grand Ledge said.

The destruction this wind storm caused has prompted the governor to get involved.

“Were working with the Michigan State Police and organizations like the Red Cross,” Governor Rick Snyder said in a news conference last week.

There’s still more work that needs to be done and when it is, should there be a “post-restoration” review?

“I don’t think it’s ever bad to have a review and have them come in and give us an update, how it went, what they see they did good, and what they saw their weakness might have been this time, there’s always what they call those “after-action” reports that every company does, or police force or whatever when there’s an incident,” Senator Nofs said.

It’s always good to have measures in place when things like this happen, but you can’t predict what Mother Nature will throw at you. That’s why these lawmakers say it all boils down to this

“It does maybe point out that there should be some additional investment and tree trimming etc. Preparing for this but I know how hard both DTE and consumers have worked and their employees and their contractors who they brought from out of state in,” Senator Mike Shirkey R-Clark Lake said.

Eaton County has activated it’s new self-reporting tool for people to report damages when they happen.

It was used for the first time the same day of the wind storm. With this new program, residents are able to self-enter property damage from a storm, which will allow emergency service officials to get a much faster understanding of the extent of damages. It also helps them to respond quicker and more efficiently.

When there is an emergency in Eaton County, you can make reports by clicking here.

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