High winds to give way to snow, cold in SE Mich.
The winds that sparked thousands of outages, toppled power lines and damaged trees are dying down as cold and snow move into the forecast.
The National Weather Service calls for temperatures to drop into the teens overnight, then top out in the 20s on Tuesday — more than 10 degrees below average for the date. There's also a slight chance of flurries, with dusting expected to closer to the Ohio border.
Snow is likely late Tuesday into Wednesday for all of southeast Michigan. Accumulation for both days is expected to reach 2 inches in Ann Arbor; 2-3 in Detroit; 3-4 in Howell and Pontiac; 4-5 in Port Huron; and 5 or greater in Flint, Saginaw and the Thumb, the weather service said.
The wintry conditions should end by Thursday, but the thermometer is set to hover in the low 30s. Highs are not forecast to reach 35 until Friday.
The mercury climbed to 28 on Monday as crews scrambled to restore power to thousands of customers affected after winds of up to 61 mph roared through the region a day earlier.
DTE Energy reported about 3,000 customers without power late Monday, down from 160,000. The utility said it expects to restore power to those customers before midnight Tuesday. . The storm brought down more than 1,000 power lines across southeast Michigan, the company said.
"We know how difficult it is to be without power, and we thank our customers for their patience as our crews continue to work 16-hour shifts until all safety hazards are cleared, and all outages are restored," the company said in a statement.
Consumers Energy reported about 376outages affecting 3,200customers customers affected by outages early Tuesday, down from a peak of 127,500.
Nearly all of the utility's remaining customers will have their power restored by 6 p.m. Tuesday, while some of the hardest hit areas, including Hamilton, Kalamazoo, Traverse City and Greenville, may not be completely restored until late Tuesday, Consumers Energy said.
“Windy conditions that continued overnight, plus poor driving conditions, affected our restoration progress early today,” said Guy Packard, Consumers Energy’s vice president of electric operations, in a statement. “However, improved weather has helped our crews as we continue working until every customer is restored. We greatly appreciate our customers’ patience as we work 24/7 to complete the work.”
Winds of 31 mph were observed at the airport in Pontiac just before 6 a.m., along with gusts of 41 mph. At Custer Airport in Monroe, gusts of 45 mph were observed.
Meanwhile, wind gusts of hurricane force, 74 mph, or higher were reported around the eastern United States, including West Virginia and New York. Atop Mount Washington, the Northeast’s highest peak of 6,288 feet in New Hampshire, a gust of 144 mph was recorded.
The Associated Press contributed