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Power restored

Becky Vargo • Jul 10, 2017 at 8:00 AM

Streets and pathways have been cleared and power continues to be restored to hundreds of thousands of people left in the dark by a storm that ripped through the Grand Haven area early Friday morning.

Seventy-two-year-old Grand Haven resident Lawrence Thon died when a tree fell on his house in Highland Park.

No other injuries in the Grand Haven area have been reported at this point.

Grand Haven Board of Light and Power employees continued to work Sunday evening to restore power to individual residences where more extensive storm damage required repairs, officials said.

The majority of the BLP customers without power were expected to have been back on line by Saturday night.

The BLP’s outage map showed scattered customers still without power Sunday evening, most of them in an area west of U.S. 31 south of Washington Avenue.

Consumers Energy spokesman Dennis McKee said only 8,000 of the original 152,000 customers who lost power in the storm remained without power as of 6 p.m. Sunday.

That was down from 27,000 customers still without power early Sunday morning.

McKee anticipated the majority of the restorations would be complete by midnight, although some customers would not have power back until Monday morning, including customers in Grand Haven and Robinson townships.

“The unique element of this storm was the magnitude of it in densely populated areas in and around Grand Rapids,” McKee said.

While the Grand Haven area received its share of problems, the worst was in the Hudsonville area, he said.

“Restoration efforts were particularly challenging because of the devastation there,” McKee said. 

Consumers Energy brought in hundreds of extra crews to help, even from as far away as Tennessee, he noted. Crews worked around the clock to restore power.

Although some people had power, their cable television did not work.

Dave Perry Jr., a field supervisor for Charter Spectrum, noted on social media that their service does run off power, so even though someone has power at their home, it does not mean that the cable service has power. 

He thanked people for their patience and reminded customers that cable lines could not be restored until the power company had completed their work.

Dog trails were closed at Ottawa County’s Kirk Park after the storm, but the downed power lines and trees were cleaned up Sunday afternoon and the trails re-opened.

Power was restored as well and parks officials announced they could accept credit cards again.

In Spring Lake Township Saturday, Laura Bronold jogged past a large tree down across Boom Road.

A striped chair next to some barricades helped grab your attention.

Bronold said she was still without power as of Saturday morning at her 148th Avenue home.

“I can still take a shower,” she said. “I think I’m going to go buy a generator today, just to keep the fridge going.”

Although the weather cleared up after the storm – which meteorologists said were basically straight-line winds – more thunderstorms could be in store through Thursday, according to the National Weather Service.

High temperatures will be in the mid to upper 70s most of the week. 

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