2017-07-06 / Life in Leelanau

‘Not a good day’ for power outage in Leland; merchants manage to cope

CONSUMERS ENERGY crews work to restore power to Leland Thursday. CONSUMERS ENERGY crews work to restore power to Leland Thursday. With an influx of visitors to Leland for the Fourth of July, the last thing local merchants needed was a power outage.

But they had to cope with one last Thursday at approximately 1 p.m. when 884 Consumers Energy customers were out of power after a tree fell over power lines south of Leland.

“We had to remove the tree and make sure there weren’t any equipment issues,” said Roger Morgenstern of Consumers Energy. “It was a relatively simple fix.”

But the fix took time. Power was restored at 6:40 p.m., leaving residents and business owners without power for a little over five hours, Morgenstern said.

Jennifer Collins, president of the Leland Chamber of Commerce and owner of Two Fish Gallery, saw the power outage firsthand. One of the first things she thought about when power goes out during the summer is the weather, Collins said.

“Luckily it wasn’t a very hot day because then you have to think about how to keep people cool,” Collins said.

The biggest challenge for businesses during a power outage is the darkness, Collins added.

“It’s tough for a lot of shops around here because people can’t shop in the dark,” Collins said. “We can’t run credit cards and some people can’t operate without power.”

Though several local restaurants have backup generators to continue to serve meals during outages, some closed early Thursday, Collins said.

Not only does a lack of lighting cause for some dangerous circumstances, but local businesses also cannot process credit cards or provide for visitors, Collins said.

“This is a busy time of year for us so it’s not good to go without power right now,” she said. “Not a good day for a power outage.”

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