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DTE Offers Credits to Berkley, Royal Oak Customers

Approximately 8,000 consumers impacted by outages following a July 17 substation fire will receive $25 to $250 off their bills, spokesman Alejandro Bodipo-Memba said.

DTE Energy will give approximately 8,000 customers credits on their bills following a July 17 in Berkley and Royal Oak during record-setting heat.

The credits will be for $25 to $250, depending on the length of the customer's outage, said DTE spokesman Alejandro Bodipo-Memba, who added all eligible customers have been contacted via a recorded phone message.

Anyone with questions can call 313-235-4141, he said.

The July 17 equipment failure in Royal Oak that caused the fire was so intense it blew out a window and a door several feet away in the substation, Royal Oak Fire Marshall Fire Marshal Tom Nikkila said.

"It was a high-heat fire," he said. "It was quite an event.

"I am not an electrical engineer. You would have to talk to DTE," Nikkila said when asked about the fire's cause. "I can tell you it was 102 degrees that day. The demand for electricity had to be incredible."

The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat watch that day for southeast Michigan and the Detroit Free Press reported that the high hit 101 degrees, which tied a record first set on July 17, 1887.

Some customers in Berkley and Royal Oak who were impacted by the ensuing outage were without power for up to two days, Bodipo-Memba said.

"We obviously recognize this was a difficult time for our customers to be without power and we wanted to be proactive in providing credits for their inconvenience," he said.

and, while Bodipo-Memba said the service interruptions should be over, the work continues.

The damage was "pretty significant," he said.

Royal Oak Patch Editor Judy Davids contributed to this report.

JH August 21, 2012 at 04:57 PM
I was surprised & very pleased to receive a recorded phone call letting me know I would be credited $250 for being without power for two days. We spent $10-15 on ice to keep our things in the fridge and freezer cold, but otherwise it was really just an inconvenience that can be expected from time to time.
Kevin Moser October 15, 2012 at 03:38 PM
I am little more concerned of increases in loss of power over the past few years. I, like many have a freezer and quite honestly, $250.00 would not cover my loss. My concern grows with increased number of garage and house fires along with some blocks south of Catalpa that actually had wires melt. I fear infrastructure is giving away which could lead to larger outages with higher risks related to life and safety. I do not ever recall having this many outages and incidents in all my years in Berkley and hope DTE gives the city a little added attention.

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