HOLLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WZZM) -- It was a winter wake up call for many people in West Michigan Thursday morning, while others didn't even see a snowflake.
Ottawa and Allegan counties were among the hardest hit, with thousands of power outages and slick roads all around. At Van Doren Hearing Care, it was a challenge to help patients hear better when staff members could barely see.
"We had an emergency where someone can't hear so we had to fix their tubing," says Karen Van Doren Naglekirk, an audiologist at Van Doren Hearing Care.
The hearing center was among the 5,000 power outages in Ottawa and Allegan counties. Staff members used flashlights and iPhones to fix a hearing aid.
"We're using those emergency lights to keep the business open," says Naglekirk.
Meanwhile, Consumer Energy crews were hard at work trimming snow covered trees that were falling on power lines.
Drivers from Hudsonville to Zeeland were being extra cautious.
"Ready or not here it comes," says driver Kim Ybarra.
"It was snowing yesterday afternoon a little bit, but sure didn't expect to wake up and find this in the morning," says driver, J.D. Deemter.
Even those paying attention to the forecast were surprised.
"I wasn't expecting it this morning, I thought its still October they are exaggerating a little bit on the forecast," says Zeeland resident, Elly Butler.
The Holland Board of Public Works also had about 200 outages, but they were restored a few hours later.