A tree down on Spencer Street in Ferndale. Photo Credit Kerry McGraw
DETROIT (WJBK) - Metro Detroit and the rest of Southeast Michigan was under a high wind warning that led to a large portion of the area losing power at some point in the day on Wednesday.
As of 5:30 p.m., DTE Energy says 540,000 customers in Southeast Michigan are without power. Earlier in the day, DTE was getting approximately 1,000 reports of outages each minute. They've called in crews from other states to help with restoration.
DTE is saying it is the second worst outage in its history. A Wind Advisory has been issued to last until 9 p.m. following the High Wind Warning which expired at 7 p.m.
Meanwhile, Consumers reports 260,000 costumers are in the dark as well. That brings the total outage for both companies to about 800,000.
The timetable for when the power will be restored is unknown at this time.
The strong winds will blow throughout the day, meaning that more people are expected to lose power. With gusts hitting 60 MPH at times, it could knock down trees, limbs, and blow debris around the area.
LIVE ON FOX 2 NEWS AT FIVE - when will the winds finally blow out? CLICK HERE TO WATCH
A High Wind Warning remains in effect for all of southern Michigan until 7PM tonight and yes, these winds are on the same level as a Tropical Storm. This wind is not just an inconvenience either, it's downright dangerous.
CLICK HERE: DTE ENERGY MAP (It may not work. The website has been down since approximately 11 a.m.)
Here's what you need to know:
The warning is in effect until around 7:00 p.m. Wednesday. Expect winds to average between 20 and 40 MPH and gusts up to 60 MPH.
The strongest winds of the day will be blowing between Noon and 4PM - it is at this time we can expect the 60 mph wind gusts. Between 4PM and 7PM the wind will continue to remain strong, but will likely fall to the 20-40 mph range. After 7PM winds will drop to 10-20 mph and by around midnight we can expect things to return to normal.
The wind is causing plenty of problems outside. With many neighborhoods having garbage day today, garbage cans and recycle bins are being blown all around. Tree limbs are being snapped and power lines are down. In fact, anything not tied down has the chance to be knocked around due to these winds. Be careful and make sure you help pick up after the wind is gone tomorrow.
If you see a downed line, call 800.477.4747 and stay at least 20 feet away from the lines at all times. If a downed line touches your car, stay inside and wait for help. If you must get out of the car because of fire or other danger, jump out out of your car without touching the vehicle and the ground at the same time.