Day 4 without power - 5,000 DTE customers still in dark

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They've been working around the clock to restore power to nearly 400,000 customers and tonight DTE almost has everyone back on line.

Just north of Seven Mile, the lights are back on, but south of Seven Mile, folks are still in the dark and will have to tough it out one more night. DTE Energy is pleading with them to be patient.

It was day four without power for roughly 5,000 DTE customers like Bennie Golden.

"We make the best of it on our block though," he said. "Some of us have generators, some of us don't."

The weekend ice storm left many in metro Detroit in the dark Sunday, about 390,000 customers to be exact. DTE has restored power for 99 percent of them.

Some in northwest Detroit, among other areas, are still roughing it.

"I've been lighting my fireplace when I do check on the house," said Davinia Damron. "I can't stay here because it's cold. It is too cold for my dog in there."

DTE says most of the remaining outages are clusters of single customers and it takes just as long to restore power to those small batches of homes and businesses as it would larger groups comprised of thousands.

"It's been tough," said Loring McCloud. "The food is spoiling, the freezer is leaking and the walls are sweating."

Homeowners like Loring McCloud and businesses like Amici's Pizza were forced to throw out food. 

"It's happened a lot lately in the last five years," said Jennifer Stark, co-owner Amici's Pizza. "I don't know what's going on with the infrastructure in Michigan but it is happening more and more."

For the time being, DTE crews are not sitting on their hands. Nearly 1,600 hundred crews from five states are on the ground turning the lights back on.

And as they work, we wait.

"There are a lot of people with no power," said Golden. "They are still trying to get it together. I am not going to fault DTE for that. They are working hard; they just need to hurry up."

DTE estimates that everyone impacted should have the lights back on by Thursday evening.