The lights were winking on and most residents were warm in their homes Monday as power returned to Scarborough, Cape Elizabeth and South Portland in the wake of the worst ice storm in a decade.

Public works crews had already begun clearing debris this week from a storm that knocked out power to more than 220,000 residents statewide, leaving pockets of outages scattered throughout Scarborough and South Portland and blacking out all of Cape Elizabeth for most of the weekend.

“We still have isolated areas that don’t have power, such as Little John Road, Valley Road and Ivy Road,” Cape Elizabeth Fire Chief Peter Gleeson said Monday. “They’re scattered all over the place, and we hope to have them up and running soon.”

The areas affected in South Portland included Mill Creek, where Hannaford and Shaw’s supermarkets were operating on generators Friday. South Portland City Hall was also powered by a generator Friday.

Most of Scarborough also had its power back Monday, said Fire Chief Michael Thurlow. About 50 residents took advantage of the town’s storm shelter that officials set up on Friday afternoon at Scarborough High School, he said.

“I was a little surprised this time by the turnout, but I don’t know why it would’ve been a little higher,” he said. “We do enjoy providing the services, but most folks usually have family and friends and find that more comfortable than going to a shelter.”

The shelter closed on Saturday night, but residents seeking warmth and a place to stay were referred to several American Red Cross shelters in the area, Thurlow said.

Scarborough resident Anna Livingstone took shelter at the high school on Friday after losing power at her house at 1:15 on Friday morning. She arrived at noon after her kerosene heater ran out of fuel.

“I needed to get warm,” she said, drinking a hot cup of tea and looking through the window at the SHS football field.

Cape Elizabeth residents took shelter at the South Portland Community Center on Friday and Saturday, Gleeson said, before the town opened its own shelter at the fire station. Two people took advantage of it Sunday night and one person took a shower there on Monday morning, Gleeson said.

“We find that lots of times, people have family or friends they can stay with,” he said. “I think a lot of people were also staying close to home because they were worried about their pipes freezing.”

That’s what Cape Elizabeth resident Gail Babick did.

“It made for a very long weekend, but I stayed home because I was concerned about my pipes freezing,” she said. “I have a woodstove, but that was barely blocking the cold.”

Babick said she and her two dogs, a pug and a labrador mix, stayed bundled up inside for most of the weekend.

“We were wearing our outside clothes inside,” she said. “The temperature at one point was only 41 degrees in the kitchen.”

At its peak in Scarborough Friday, the areas of Pine Point, Dunstan, Black Point and Eight Corners were without power on, Scarborough police said.

“This storm for us was worse than the 1998 ice storm,” Thurlow said. “In 1998 we only had a small section of town affected, but this time the whole town was blanketed with a lot of freezing rain.”

The Cape Elizabeth Fire Department fought a blaze at 30 Cheverus Road Saturday morning that started in the garage in the area of a generator, Gleeson said.

The fire did “significant” damage to the garage, but no one was hurt and the house was fine, he said.

Gleeson said while the recent storm wreaked havoc, it wasn’t as bad for Cape Elizabeth as the 1998 storm.

“This was a shorter duration, which obviously helped a lot,” he said. “The icing didn’t continue for days like it did in ’98, and CMP’s response was excellent. I think CMP was much better prepared than they were in ’98 and they had a much better plan.”

Anna Livingstone enjoys a hot cup of tea on Friday while looking out the window the Scarborough High School athletic fields. Livingstone lost power at 1:30 Friday morning and took advantage of the town’s shelter set up at the high school. Heavey ice bends trees along Route 114 in Scarborough on Friday afternoon. Heavy ice bends trees along Route 114 in Scarborough on Friday afternoon.


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