Utility shutoffs suspended during Michigan sub-zero temperatures
The region's major gas and electric suppliers are suspending customer shutoffs this week, the state announced Wednesday.
DTE Energy, Consumers Energy and SEMCO said they have temporarily suspended shutoffs due to the dangerously cold weather, according to the Michigan Agency for Energy.
“With the extreme weather it’s vitally important that Michiganders stay safe and warm,” said Madhu Anderson, deputy director of the Michigan Agency for Energy. “If anyone has trouble paying their utility bills, there are a number of options available to them, from community service agencies to low-income assistance by utilities. We urge those in need to access these critical services by calling either 211 or your local utility provider.”
DTE typically requires the temperature to fall below 15 or wind chills below zero for two or more consecutive days before it suspends shutoffs. For Consumers, temperatures must fall below 15 or wind chills below zero for a halt to services.
Nine community agencies in Michigan are designated to help distribute emergency funding through the Michigan Energy Assistance Program including Barry County United Way, Michigan Community Action, Salvation Army, Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Superior Watershed Partnership, The Heat and Warmth Fund, TrueNorth Community Services, United Way of Jackson County, and United Way of Southeastern Michigan.
Anyone having difficulties paying utility bills should call their local electric or natural gas provider and enroll in programs designed to help.
Consumers customers should call (800) 477-5050; DTE, (800) 477-4747; Upper Peninsula Power Co., (800) 562-7680; and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp., (800) 242-9137.
For issues with utilities, customers can call the MPSC Customer Assistance at (800)292-9555.