Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest utility, is stationing three new mobile storm units across Michigan to help crews restore power more quickly after damaging storms.
Consumers Energy is the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy, providing natural gas and electricity to 6.6 million of the state’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties. It operates one of the largest fleets in the country, ranking in at No. 146 on the Top 300 Commercial Fleets for 2013.
The 53-foot long box semi-trailers will be staffed during storm deployment by company storeroom personnel and are ready to roll out with short notice. The units are equipped with items most often needed for storm work: cross arms, insulators, coils of wire, hardware, and other equipment.
Strategically located in Grand Rapids, Jackson and Cadillac, the mobile storm units will be deployed to areas where powerful storms are forecast to hit, and will serve as staging areas for crews performing service restoration.
“Bringing the storeroom to the field will reduce travel and help our lineworkers involved in storm restoration focus on what they do best — making repairs and getting the lights back on for customers safely,” said Michele Kirkland, Consumers Energy’s vice president of energy operations. “This initiative will shorten outages and help us keep our promise to provide reliable energy service for our customers.”
The mobile storm units were outfitted in Grand Rapids, and were scheduled to be delivered to their home headquarters last week.
Reinforcing its commitment to Pure Michigan Business Connect, Consumers Energy hired Grand Rapids-based Giant Graphics to apply visuals to the units, which feature photographs of four Consumers Energy field employees in action.