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Michigan's Public Service Commissioners review Ice Storm outages


LANSING (WKZO) -- The Michigan Public Service Commission has decided to investigate why it took Consumers Energy and DTE so long to restore power after the ice storm.

The Storm struck a large section of the Lower Peninsula just before Christmas.

About 625-thousand customers were impacted by the icy assault at one time or another, as the outages continued to occur for days after the initial storm, which left many of the state’s most populous communities in a glaze of ice.

The unluckiest customers weren’t restored until New Years Eve.

The MPSC plans to look at the “best practices” of utilities around the nation and determine if any of those practices could be applied here.

Some of the biggest complaints came from customers of Lansing’s Board of Power and Light, about 40% of whom complained that they were not only left in the dark physically, but practically too because the utility was so bad at informing them of what was going on.

But the MPSC has no jurisdiction over municipal systems, and unless the State Legislature approves a proposal to change that, they won’t be subject to state scrutiny.