Fewer than 450 Central Maine Power customers remained without electricity late Sunday night following several days of repair efforts after the company predicted it would restore most service by the evening.

A gusty nor’easter on Thursday knocked out power to roughly 180,000 of CMP’s 646,359 customers, with an estimated 32,707 still without electricity late Friday night.

Hundreds of line workers from Maine and the wider New England region – and even some from Canada — worked through the weekend, restoring power to all but about 5,000 customers by Saturday night.

The number ticked down through Sunday morning, dropping to just under 4,500 at noon. By 10:45 p.m., CMP reported the number had fallen to 447.

“We’ve thrown everything we have at that Brunswick-Harpswell area,” where many customers experienced outages, said Catharine Hartnett, a spokeswoman for CMP.

Hartnett said Sunday afternoon that power would be restored to most customers by the evening “with a few exceptions.”

Emera Maine, which serves northern and eastern Maine, reported just one customer – in the Hancock County town of Brooklin – without power as of 9:42 p.m. Sunday, down from around 260 the night before.

Harpswell, with its jagged coastline, made up the bulk of CMP outages in Cumberland County, with 145 customers lacking power by Sunday night, according to the company’s website. Portland had just eight reported outages.

Some customers are questioning whether outages in their areas have been undercounted, however. With such a high volume of work, CMP’s outage numbers have fluctuated unpredictably, at times climbing after appearing to fall.

The number of outages in Freeport went up, for instance, from a reported 130 Saturday night to 164 early Sunday morning.

Hartnett, the CMP spokeswoman, said the company’s outage reports came from a “predictive” model that combined smart meter data and customer reports.

“On occasion, the website may not indicate that a road or an individual house is out of power,” she said in an email. “This does not mean that the company is unaware of the outage if it has been reported to us.”

She also noted that outage numbers tend to fluctuate because workers occasionally cut power temporarily to repair the system.

For those still without electricity, the city of Portland opened warming shelters in the Reiche Community Center at 166 Brackett St. and the Riverton Community Center at 1600 Forest Ave.

The Riverton shelter was open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday. The Reiche center was open from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

On Peaks Island, the community center lobby was open 24 hours through the weekend, city spokeswoman Jessica Grondin said.


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