JACKSON, Mich., Aug. 11, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- More than 50 men and women from Consumers Energy are headed to Indiana Wednesday to assist in restoring power to more than 40,000 customers still in the dark after strong storms tore through the Midwest on Monday.
The 15 Consumers Energy crews, equipment and support personnel are from 15 different service centers around Lower Michigan. Earlier Tuesday. Consumers Energy released 12 contractor crews from three Michigan-based electric companies who do work for the energy provider.
All the personnel will be assisting NIPSCO, the northern Indiana energy provider that had more than 90,000 customers affected by the severe thunderstorms and hurricane-force winds. The storms caused extensive damage to NIPSCO's distribution system, requiring additional help in making repairs.
"We are pleased we can assist our neighbors in Indiana while still having enough crews to service our customers and complete a timely restoration from Monday night's storms," said Guy Packard, Consumers Energy's vice president of electric operations.
The assistance is through Great Lakes Mutual Assistance, a group of electric providers in 10 states that work together to restore power after major storms. In June, Consumers Energy hosted mutual assistance crews from Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, Tennessee and Alabama to help restore power to more than 305,000 customers after several rounds of severe thunderstorms. The host utility pays all the costs of assisting utilities.
In Michigan, approximately 33,000 Consumers Energy customers were affected by Monday evening's storms. As of late Tuesday afternoon, about 3,000 customers remained without service, with power expected to be restored to nearly all customers by 10 p.m. today.
Consumers Energy, Michigan's largest energy provider, is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), providing natural gas and/or electricity to 6.7 million of the state's 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.