Updated 12/24 at 11:50 a.m.
Power outages in Lincoln County are on the rise again, with over 25% of Lincoln County households suffering from power outages according to a report from Central Maine Power issued at 11:34 a.m. on Tuesday.
CMP crews have been working for days to maintain the power grid, both during and following an ice storm that arrived early Sunday morning and continued to affect the area through Monday night. Even with the storm passing, subfreezing conditions combined with the possibility of winds gusting to 25 mph will hamper the efforts of CMP crews as well as increasing the possibility of additional outages.
The big question is whether power restoration will be complete by Christmas Day. So far, CMP has been unable to answer that question.
“We have new outage reports coming in continually, so our first priority is to keep the public safe during the impact phase of the storm,” said CMP spokesman John Carroll in statement issued Monday night. “We will have many customers out overnight, but we won’t have a better estimate of the damage or the length of the recovery time until the icing stops and the impact phase is over.”
According to CMP, even when the restoration gets underway, the company warns that progress may be slowed by continued new outages and hazardous working conditions. Once CMP can safely begin restoration, the company’s first goal will be to restore service to critical facilities such as hospitals, public safety facilities, and shelters. “CMP urges anyone who is without power or loses service to prepare for at least one night without power,” Carroll said.
In other reports, CMP has said it may take up until the end of the week to restore power to the 85,366 customers in Maine who were suffering outages as of the 11:34 a.m. CMP report.
There are 7103 customers in Lincoln County without power, according to CMP. Most of those are in Jefferson with 1765 outages reported, followed closely by Whitefield with 1210. Nearly every Lincoln County town has outages, according to CMP.
The power outages came is two waves. The first was on Sunday when 1047 Lincoln County homes lost power, with power restored to all but 44 residences by nightfall, according to CMP. The second wave of power outages came on Monday, with over 5000 households without power by the afternoon, according to CMP. Power had been restored to 1454 households by 7 p.m., according to CMP, with 3564 remaining without power. That number climbed again on Tuesday morning to the current figure of 7103, according to CMP.
The Lincoln County News will continue to follow the progress of this event and post any additional information here as soon as it is obtained.