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DTE Energy continues site remediation, fully assessing damage and developing next steps at Melvindale facility

DETROIT, July 7, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) continues its comprehensive response following the incident at the DTE Energy Rouge Complex in Melvindale on Saturday, July 2. DTE offers the following update:

  • The facility has operated safely for 73 years before this accident.
  • We are cooperating fully with the proper authorities as they continue to investigate the incident.
  • We empathize with our customers who were in anyway impacted by the incident at the DTE Energy complex in Melvindale. Although the incident was visually dramatic and caused the evacuation of about 1,500 residents, there was only the one injury, that being to the driver of the car that crashed into the complex.
  • We are very proud of how the community responded, and also how our employees invoked the necessary emergency procedures to secure the situation.
  • Our pipeline technology also worked as designed, quickly closing a valve to the line, shutting off the source of the fire.
  • We want to acknowledge the efforts of the local police and fire departments and thank them for their close collaboration with the company to effectively address the situation.
  • There also were no major outages for DTE's natural gas and electric customers. Due to the quick response of our gas and electric teams, gas and electric service was restored to the few who were affected.
  • Damage to DTE facilities included extensive damage to a three-story building, moderate damage to a 1-story lab building, as well as vehicles, materials and equipment on site and lost in the fire. About 40 of the 140 employees who worked in the damaged area of the complex were displaced. They have moved to other secure areas in the complex or to other metro Detroit facilities. Financial estimates of the damage are not available at this time
  • Safety is our #1 priority at DTE Energy – for our customers, communities and employees. DTE employees train and work with local police and fire departments around the state on a regular basis to rehearse the response to unlikely incidents such as this one. In fact, DTE Energy was cited recently by the American Gas Association for "best in class" effectiveness of its safety programs. As a result of our planning and preparation, we saw the best possible outcome given the circumstances.
  • We commend the local authorities – Melvindale and Dearborn police and fire departments – for their swift response and partnership through this incident.
DTE Energy

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SOURCE DTE Energy

For further information: Scott Simons, DTE Energy - 313.235.5555