As repair crews worked around the clock to restore power, tens of
thousands in central and northeastern USA woke up to a cold, dark
The fierce winter storm that
brought a White Christmas to many Northerners also delivered a dark
Christmas to those who lost power in Michigan, Maine, Vermont and New
York state after a weekend ice and snowstorm rolled across the region.
in Maine restored power overnight to 35,000 people who had been without
power since the weekend, the Associated Press reported. By 8 a.m.,
about 70,000 remained without power.
In Michigan, where more
winter weather was about to arrive, 151,000 customers remained without
power after a Saturday storm that darkened more than twice that many
homes, according to utilities.
Consumers Energy's official Twitter
account said "129k w/o power this morning as crews prepare to battle
snow and wind." DTE Energy reported that 22,000 customers remained
without power in its coverage area, which includes Detroit.
Hoving, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Grand
Rapids, Mich., said most people were without power in some counties
between Grand Rapids and Lansing, Mich. Some may not have electricity
until sometime Wednesday or even Thursday, he said.
"It's a big
deal," Hoving said. "It's Christmas, and we've just had a major ice
storm," with trees toppling over and ice-covered power lines.
is our largest Christmas-week storm in our 126-year history, and it's
our largest ice storm in the last 10 years," Consumers Energy
spokeswoman Debra Dodd said. "We are working as hard as we can to get
people back on. We recognize that this is a terrible time for this to
She said a total of 303,000 customers were affected at
one point by the weekend storms, as ice-coated trees, roads and power
lines. By Tuesday evening, that figure was down to 152,000, the Lansing State Journal reported.
what's happening is, because the temperatures are remaining below
freezing, the ice is not melting," Dodd said. "Things are continuing to
In Flint, the American Red Cross set up a warming shelter and a mobile food truck provided meals.
we're recommending is, if they don't have a relative they can stay
with, that they call 211," Dodd said. "That puts them in contact with
their nearest United Way agency."
The utility company said crews from as far away as Kansas and Washington, D.C., arrived Tuesday to help restore power, the Lansing State Journal said.
In East Lansing, Terry Brock, from Richmond, Va., was visiting his parents when the ice storm struck.
was basically up all night listening to transformers blow up and
listening to branches fall all over the neighborhood," he said.
"There's no one to be angry at so I'm not going to be," said Brock, whose car was damaged by a falling limb.
New York state, Gov. Andrew Cuomo activated the state Emergency
Operations Center and declared a winter ice storm emergency for western
and northern areas, where about 25,000 people were without power
In Maine, nearly 70,000 people lost power, including a medical clinic in Bangor that forced walk-in patients to go elsewhere, the Bangor Daily News reports.
newspaper said as many as 150,000 customers were affected, including
those in entire towns such as Readfield, Islesboro, Frankofot and
Sharon Kiley Mack, executive director of the Machias Bay Chamber of Commerce, wrote in a Facebook post
that the ice has taken its toll on the town: "Stand outside for a
minute and all you can hear are crashing trees, falling branches and
Power was knocked out to downtown Ellsworth, Maine, which declared a state of emergency.
conditions are becoming life-threatening with icy conditions paired
with downed power lines and fallen trees," the town said in a statement.
"Especially after sunset, it will become difficult to see the downed
power lines and trees contributing to even more hazardous conditions."
Vermont, almost 10,000 people were still without power on Tuesday.
Vermont Electric Co-op CEO David Hallquist said ice continued to
threaten power lines across the region and that co-op members living in
the most isolated areas risk facing the longest outages, Vermont Public
think we're heading for a very dangerous situation, that we're going to
have power outages probably through Christmas," said Hallquist. "And
the temperatures are going to be dropping below zero."
carbon monoxide poisoning likely killed five people using generators or
barbecues to stay warm after losing power and heat.
Rob Ford said the city received about 110 carbon monoxide calls Monday -
six times more than on a normal day. Hospitals treated 11 people with
signs of carbon monoxide poisoning.
About 90,000 customers were
still awaiting power Tuesday evening, and officials said some may not
have it restored until after Christmas.