Freezing rain and ice-covered roads create harsh conditions for Mount Pleasant


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A mix of snow and ice falls onto campus during Winter Storm Xanto on April 15.

Students and Mount Pleasant residents are advised not to travel and to stay indoors as winter storms sweep across the face of Michigan. 

According to a National Weather Service Preliminary Local Storm Report, ice covered roads, freezing rain and sleet continue to accumulate in Michigan. 

"The storm seems to be winding down today, but the threat will continue tonight," said meteorologist Brandon Hoving of Grand Rapids. "Tomorrow, we can expect wet snow and temperatures around 36 (degrees Fahrenheit)." 

During a winter storm, students can stay safe a number of ways, Hoving said. Do not travel during sleet and freezing rain, steer clear of branches and fallen power lines and make sure to have essentials like working flash lights, water bottles and blankets.

Hoving said there are a number of branches and power lines down near Mount Pleasant.  

While looking at the current state of consumer power in Mount Pleasant, Hoving concluded that a fairly large portion of Mount Pleasant is without power.  

Consumers Energy assigned crews to the 11 outages between West River Road in Mount Pleasant and south of Fremont Road in Shepherd. Crews expect to have power completely restored by 7:30 p.m. April 15, according to Consumer Energy's Outage Map.

More than 8,200 customers have been affected by the outages in Mount Pleasant. Nearly 47,000 consumers have been affected by the 851 outages across Michigan.

While lights continue to flicker on campus, Hoving said to try not to use elevators. 

After power went out at her Copper Beech Townhomes apartment around noon, Ypsilanti sophomore Brianna Ynclan went to her friend's apartment to stay warm.

"Power has been off and on (at my apartment), so I didn't have Wifi," said Ynclan. "(The power company) told us to wait it out and that Mount Pleasant businesses also didn't have power."

According to a Facebook post by the U.S. National Weather Service Grand Rapids, surfaces may remain ice covered even if temperatures warm above 32 degrees.  

April 18-19, Mount Pleasant can expect to accrue more rain and snow with freezing temperatures, but weather will start to dry out toward the end of the week, Hoving said.

The cool weather pattern will continue into early May, Hoving said. It may be awhile until Michigan can shake the weather pattern.  

"Expect a cold season," he said. "We will have a break later this week, but don't expect 'spring'." 

Reports will continue to be posted on https://www.weather.gov/grr/. Updates will also be posted on the U.S. National Weather Service Grand Rapids Michigan Facebook page. 

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