November 27, 2013

High winds causing power outages

York County is the hardest hit early this morning.

By Edward D. Murphy emurphy@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

About 1,500 Central Maine Power Co. customers are without electricity this morning due to a storm packing heavy rain and high winds.

At one point, nearly 5,000 customers were without power, but most of those were due to a problem in a substation serving Berwick and Lebanon, said Gail Rice, a spokeswoman for CMP. Nearly 4,000 customers in those towns lost power shortly after 5 a.m., but it was restored around 8:45 a.m., she said.

Lincoln County, particulary Nobleboro, has more than 300 without power and Franklin County has more than 150, primarily in Madrid, the utility said.

Rice said the utility expects continued problems throughout Wednesday and possibly into Thanksgiving Day because of the storm. The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory for coastal areas of western Maine until 3 p.m. and has predicted sustained winds of 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 50 mph.

“As long as the wind keeps kicking up, we’re going to be chasing outages,” Rice said.

The utility on Tuesday put a storm response plan into effect. That plan includes fueling utility trucks and making sure they are loaded with equipment and holding regular sessions to discuss staffing levels. In addition, contract crews are on notice in case the storm causes widespread problems and CMP works with utilities in neighboring states to bring in additional workers if needed.

Edward D. Murphy can be contacted at 791-6465 or at:emurphy@pressherald.com

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