by Janice Limbaugh and the City of Wyoming
Wyoming work crews continue to be on the streets Tuesday morning working to reopen streets blocked by the storm and to provide assistance to the 50+ homes and 5-10 businesses in the neighborhood bordered by Clay Avenue, 56th Street and Division Avenue.
Consumers Energy expects to have crews working around the clock to secure remaining downed power lines and begin the process of restoring energy after an EF1 tornado touched down in Wyoming Sunday night. City inspectors have already begun the process of inspecting homes and businesses to ensure they are structurally safe and plan to continue the process throughout the day today.
Extra Public Safety patrols will be on duty for the next 48 hours. Community members who do not live in the area should avoid “sightseeing” in the affected area, which is already congested with work crews and concerned family and friends. Residents will be asked for identification to show that they live in the area before they will be allowed through.
Ideal Park suffered extensive damage and will remain closed until further notice. The Parks and Recreation Department is working with individuals and groups who had reserved space in the park to reschedule events. A reminder that residents who need shelter or other assistance can access one of two shelters now open in Wyoming:
• The Salvation Army has established a temporary aid station at the Ideal Park Christian Reformed Church at 320 56th Street SW.
• The American Red Cross has established a shelter at the Kentwood Activity Center at 355 48th Street SE.
Any resident needing shelter assistance can call the Red Cross hotline at 616.899.4511. For non-emergency public safety needs, residents can call the Wyoming Public Safety Department at 616.530.7300. Other city services and requests will be handled through Wyoming City hall at 616.530.7272.
“We have made tremendous progress Monday, but there is still a lot of work to do,” said Wyoming City Manager Curtis Holt. “We remain focused on clearing the streets of brush and debris to allow for safe travel of emergency vehicles into the area and, once Consumers Power is through with its restoration, assessing the safety of homes and businesses.
“Know that anyone from the City will be clearly identifiable as an employee. Be cautious if someone comes to your door asking for money upfront to do repair work or for information. Be sure to get proper identification before answering questions or writing a check.”
Public Works is asking Wyoming residents with downed trees or tree limbs inside the curb line so they are not by the road. The yard waste area is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Starting Monday for the next two weeks, Public Works crews will be picking up brush in that neighborhood only.