Once again I am sitting at my desk, powerless, hoping the battery on my aging laptop holds out until I get my thoughts down, praying for the power to come back on and eating Cheez-Its for breakfast.

My little corner of South Portland has experienced power outages seven times in the past 365 days. That seems more than a little excessive. In America electricity is a right, not a privilege. I pay a lot for electricity, and I expect the service to be consistent.

We survived the northeaster with power only to lose it later that day. In March, South Portland, Cape Elizabeth and several islands lost power because of a malfunction in the transfer station at Hinckley Park. Amazingly that exact same outage occurred in July; was the equipment properly repaired in March?

I have lived in South Portland since 2000 and historically have experienced very few power outages. However the less-than-stellar record of seven outages this past year suggests that maintenance is lagging and aging equipment is falling apart, accelerated by climate change issues including drought and more frequent windstorms.

The solution is to put the power lines where they belong, which is underground. I hear horrified gasps of concern about the expense, but think about the jobs that activity would generate. We could save the coal miners!

Barbara Dee
South Portland

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