Skip Navigation
Michigan Public Service, official Web site for the State of Michigan Home
close print view

MPSC Launches Investigation into the Responses of Consumers Energy Company and DTE Electric Company to Recent Ice Storm Damage

Contact:  Judy Palnau, 517-241-3323
Agency:  Michigan Public Service Commission   

January 8, 2014 - The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today launched an investigation into the responses of Consumers Energy Company and DTE Electric Company to recent storm damage in their service territories.

"The Michigan Public Service Commission has an obligation to ensure that regulated utilities are using ratepayer supplied funds to provide customers with reasonably reliable service, to protect the public from hazardous downed power lines, and to promptly respond to and restore power to customers suffering from outages," said MPSC Chairman John D. Quackenbush.

"Moreover, Governor Rick Snyder last month featured electric reliability - as it relates to the number of outages and their length - as one of his top energy goals for Michigan. Reports of prolonged power outages raise serious concerns and require review by the Commission."

Today's order launches an investigation that will examine: how the ice storm affected the utilities' distribution system; how the utilities responded before and during the storm (including information on the number and deployment of utility line crews, Michigan-based contractors, and mutual assistance crews from other states, as well as information on forestry crews); whether any changes could be implemented to reduce the potential for future power outages of the magnitude recently witnessed; whether there is evidence of a failure on the part of either utility to properly maintain its distribution system that could have contributed to the outages experienced during these storms; whether the utilities were properly prepared to receive and respond to customer calls to report outages, any problems experienced on the reporting system during the storm, and whether accurate information was relayed to customers; and whether the utilities sufficiently addressed all public safety concerns associated with downed power lines in a timely manner.

The Commission directed the utilities to file a report in this docket no later than 5 p.m. on Feb. 7, addressing these issues. The public is invited to comment on the utility reports. Written and email comments may be filed with the MPSC no later than 5 p.m. on Feb. 21, 2014. All comments should reference Case No. U-17542. Written comments should be sent to: Executive Secretary, Michigan Public Service Commission, P.O. Box 30221, Lansing, MI 48909. Comments may be emailed to: All information submitted to the Commission in this matter will become public information available on the Commission's website and subject to disclosure.

Thereafter, the MPSC staff will file a report in this docket no later than 5 p.m. on March 10, analyzing the comments and the utilities' filings and recommending potential changes to utility operations or procedure, if such changes are identified. The utilities may thereafter file a response to the MPSC staff's report no later than 5 p.m. on March 24. At the conclusion of the process, the Commission may propose remedial action, as appropriate.

The MPSC is an agency within the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.

Case No. U-17542

For more information about LARA, please visit Follow us on Twitter, “Like” us on Facebook or find us on YouTube


Related Content
 •  MPSC Report: Michigan Utility Customers Continue to Benefit from Energy Efficiency Programs
 •  MPSC Grants License to Ambit Midwest, LLC as Alternative Gas Supplier
 •  MPSC Authorizes Consumers Energy to Increase Bond Principal and Interest Securitization Surcharge, Increase Tax Surcharge
 •  MPSC Becomes First State Energy Agency in the Nation to Make Energy Efficiency Improvements to Its New Location Via Special PACE Financing
 •  MPSC Issues 2014-2015 Winter Energy Appraisal
 •  MPSC: Be Prepared for Winter Energy Bills by Being WinterWise
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreement Authorizing Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op's Reduction in Monthly Charge for Certain Natural Gas Customers
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreement Authorizing Consumers Energy Company to Recover Certain Deferred Major Maintenance Electric Expenses
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreements Reconciling Consumers Energy Company's and DTE Gas Company's 2013 Energy Optimization Plan Expenses
 •  Public Invited to Attend Panel Discussion and Q & A on Upper Peninsula's Energy Future Featuring Governor's Senior Policy Advisor, MPSC Commissioners
 •  MPSC Highlights Safe Use of Portable Generators during Carbon Monoxide Safety and Awareness Week
 •  MPSC Authorizes Consumers Energy Company to Implement One-Time Surcharge to Recover Over-Refunded Amounts from Gas Customers
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreement Authorizing Thumb Electric Cooperative to Increase Rates
 •  MPSC Accepts Administrative Consent Agreement on Consumers Energy Staking Procedures Resulting in Fine
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreement Authorizing Indiana Michigan Power Company to Revise Depreciation Rates Resulting in Customer Credit
 •  MPSC Advises Eight Utilities They May File Proposals that Examine Their Cost Allocation and Rate Design Methods Used to Set Rates for Electric Customers
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreement Granting Consumers Energy Company a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to Construct Natural Gas Facilities to Serve New Customers in Kent and Allegan ...
 •  MPSC Highlights Spanish Language Resources During National Hispanic Heritage Month
 •  MPSC Co-Sponsors Advanced Lighting Conference in Lansing that Showcases Dramatic Energy Efficiency Improvements
 •  MPSC Approves Settlement Agreement Authorizing SEMCO Energy Gas Company to Reconcile Its 2013 Energy Optimization Plan Revenues and Costs
QR code Home
PoliciesMichigan Survey

Copyright © 2014 State of Michigan