The UM-Dearborn Fairlane Center South campus lost power last Friday, suspending critical infrastructure around the building and the broader campus until power was restored on Sunday.
The outage, which began around 1 p.m. Friday, forced the Picasso cafeteria in the building to throw away many of their refrigerated items, which had gone bad as a result of the loss of power. Meat, dairy and fruits and vegetables were among the items that were forced to be discarded.
“We spent most of the day (Monday) throwing things away instead of prepping like we normally do,” says Kevin Brooks, a Picasso employee. He points to the “Grab-N-Go” shelf, usually stocked with food ready to go, which lay barren. Picasso was forced to serve from a limited menu made with ingredients either acquired from the Picasso on the main campus, or purchased earlier that day.
Brooks estimated the losses amounting to north of a thousand dollars. The executive chef of Picasso, Dak Zorn, says that he himself had replaced around 400 to 500 dollars worth of ingredients.
Manager Angie Stec, who has served in a managerial role at Picasso for over four years, says this is the first time this has ever happened at the Fairlane campus during her tenure.
The outage also derailed communication on the main campus, rendering the university unable to receive phone calls from outside campus. Over the weekend, the Facilities Operations department of the university kept the campus community in the loop, sending frequent updates through university-wide emails. The campus Information Technology Services (ITS) department, with help from the Ann Arbor campus, was able to reroute calls through Ann Arbor in order to keep them functional. As of Monday morning, the power has been restored and all the affected UM-Dearborn numbers are functional.
The College of Business (CoB) and College of Education, Health, and Human Services (CEHHS) both sent employees home early on Friday as a result of the power outage, but sustained no additional serious losses.
As for Picasso, they plan to be back to normal function by Wednesday, when they receive a new shipment of ingredients.