The coldest weather of the winter has settled upon Michigan, with temperatures expected to plummet below zero in many areas over the next two days. Consumers Energy is committed to helping keep Michigan residents safe and warm this winter and offers the following tips:
1. Install an audible UL listed carbon monoxide alarm. Poisonings from this colorless, odorless toxic gas are most prevalent in the winter when furnaces are operating and doors and windows are shut.
2. Make sure furnaces are operating efficiently and safely by having them inspected and tuned annually.
3. Replace furnace filters monthly during cold weather, especially if pets are in the home.
4. Keep flammable materials such as clothing and boxes away from the furnace.
5. Keep space heaters away from curtains, furniture, clothing and other flammable materials. Unplug space heaters before leaving the room or going to sleep.
6. Never use a stovetop or oven or charcoal grill to heat your home.
7. Never use a generator inside a home, basement or garage. Keep them outdoors at least 25 feet from the home.
ASSISTANCE IS AVAILABLE
1. Those facing hardships with energy bills or other needs are encouraged to call 2-1-1, a free service in all Michigan counties with resources that can help within each community.
2. Consumers Energy has a variety of programs for those in need. Customers should call 800-477-5050 for payment options and assistance programs.
3. Federal government employees in Michigan who are affected by the ongoing shutdown should contact Consumers Energy for payment arrangements.
Consumers Energy is monitoring the weather and is ready to quickly respond to any electric or natural gas service interruptions.