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From left: Raennah Morgan, Isaiah Ratcliffe and Natalie Novotny read by flashlight in Brandie Bevel’s Kindergarten class at Harvey Swanson Elementary on Monday during a power outage. Photos by Patrick McAbee. (click for larger version)

Mike Pokorzynski, Ortonville DPW, at Mill and South streets. (click for larger version)
March 14, 2012 - Heavy rain is suspected to be the cause of a power outage in the area on Monday.

Power was out for about 2-and-a-half hours—from roughly 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on March 6, affecting 2,300 customers of DTE Energy in Brandon and Groveland townships and the village of Ortonville.

DTE Spokesman John Austerberry said Tuesday the cause was still being investigated, but there was a fault, similar to a short, on a 40 kilivolt power line that feeds into the Wolf Hill Substation. DTE technicians believe a tree branch may have contacted the line and caused a short.

The delay in bringing power back, he explained, is due to DTE employees having to patrol the area, ensuring there are no downed power lines.

"We don't want to energize a circuit until we are sure it's safe to do that," he said.

The outage impacted homes, businesses, and schools. Oakwood and Belle Ann elementary schools were not affected, but parents of students at all other buildings, including Harvey Swanson, Brandon Fletcher Intermediate School, Brandon Middle School and Brandon High School were given the opportunity to pick up their children.

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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