Governor surveys wind damage first hand

As thousands work around the clock to get power back on for Michigan residents, Gov. Rick Snyder met with DTE crews Friday to see the damage first-hand.

The power is back on for more than 400,000 customers, and DTE says most should have their electricity back by Sunday.

At its peak, the heavy winds caused more than 800,000 to be without power, as 4,000 power lines knocked out because of trees like coming crashing down.

It's a storm like we've never seen, but is it enough to declare a state of emergency?

"Think about working out there for 16 hours doing this kind of work, bringing in crews from all over. So we got the people doing the work and we just ask for people's patience," Snyder said.

Gerry Anderson, chairman and CEO of DTE, says 3,500 people are part of the effort - 1,400 linemen, half from Michigan, half from six adjoining states. They've even got 1,000 people with chainsaws working on the trees.

It will likely take until the end of Sunday before 90 percent of the power is restored.

"We are doing what we need to do now.  We've got the emergency activation center is activated. They are doing their work, so let's just keep working together to help one another, and if people need more resources we want to be there to help," Snyder said.

Work is prioritized based on safety, but DTE admits they need help.

"Hundreds of our employees are going door to door to thousands of seniors' home just to check in on them. But we can't do the job that millions of Michigan citizens can in looking out for each other," Anderson said.

While touring the damage, one neighbor is able to put it in perspective, talking about a close call his wife encountered just after one of the power poles went down across his back fence.

"The DTE guy stopped her and said had she touched it she probably would have been electrocuted because there were two live wires in our backyard," said Moses Kahl.

The wind today isn’t doing crews any favors, and the cold temps are making it harder for those without power.
That being said, 40 warming stations open across the area -- call 211 to find one near you.