PORT HURON, Mich., June 16 /PRNewswire/ -- At about 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday,
June 15, SEMCO ENERGY GAS COMPANY experienced a problem in part of its Battle
The problem caused some residential pilot lights to increase. We believe
that, as a result, 39 fires were reported to Battle Creek emergency personnel.
Reportedly, two people were treated for smoke inhalation at the scene of the
fires, and required no further medical assistance. No other personal injuries
So far, company officials have investigated 25 of the 39 fire claims. The
25 investigations have revealed that 14 homes had no damage; six homes had
damage to their furnaces only; three homes had damage to their furnaces and
water heaters and two homes were destroyed.
Customers have been advised to contact their insurance company to work
with SEMCO ENERGY's claims representatives on damage repairs.
As a precaution, gas company personnel turned off gas supply to
approximately 1,000 homes. Gas company crews are now restoring service to
customers. Expectations are that all customers will have service restored
within three days.
Our preliminary investigation has determined that the problem was caused
by a combination of human error and an error in the map of a distribution
line. The investigation, in cooperation with state fire marshals and the
Michigan Public Service Commission, is continuing.
SEMCO ENERGY GAS COMPANY distributes regulated natural gas to more than
250,000 customers in Michigan. It is one of two subsidiaries of SEMCO ENERGY,
Inc. (Nasdaq: SMGS). The diversified energy services and infrastructure
company also owns SEMCO ENERGY VENTURES, which acquires and operates companies
involved in gas engineering and quality assurance services, pipeline
construction services, propane distribution, intrastate pipelines and natural
SOURCE SEMCO ENERGY GAS COMPANY
CONTACT: David Allen of SEMCO ENERGY, 616-966-0404, ext. 204, or fax, 616-966-0419