Monday, March 10, 2014
By Matthew Hongoltz-hetling
Central Maine Power Company said outages statewide should be down to about 30,000 Wednesday night after a high of 123,000 caused a two-day ice storm earlier this week.
Staff photo by Michael G. Seamans STORM RECOVERY: Chris Devine, center, hauls a sled of gifts with his daughter Jordan, 11, left, and step-son Derek Gervais, 20, right, to their home on Maplehurst Lane in Belgrade on Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. The Devine's lost power on Monday and haul their supplies in on sled. Trees and power line are down on both sides of their driveway, luckily they weren't home when the trees fell affording them the opportunity to drive to town for gas and other essentials for life off the grid.
Staff photo by Michael G. Seamans STORM RECOVERY: Jordan Devine, right, adjust gifts n a sled hauled by her father Chris, as her step-brother Derek Gervais, rear, carries a a tank of gas on Maplehurst Lane in Belgrade on Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. The Devine's lost power on Monday and haul their supplies in on sled. Trees and power line are down on both sides of their driveway, luckily they weren't home when the trees fell affording them the opportunity to drive to town for gas and other essentials for life off the grid.
Ice Storm Shelter Status
As of 6 p.m. Tuesday, 28 shelters statewide have announced their openings:
Androscoggin: Lewiston High School:. American Red Cross emergency shelter, Lewiston, 1114 9th Avenue. Opening 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Androscoggin: Oak Hill Middle School: Community shelter, Wales, 40 Ballpark Road. Opening 5 p.m. Tuesday, for pet-friendly, overnight stays. Bring bedding, cots and nonperishable food for your own consumption.
Androscoggin: Wales Town Office/Fire Station: Warming center, Wales, 175 Centre Road. Residents needing a place to warm up may contact the town at 207-212-2879 and someone will meet them there to open the shelter.
Hancock: Bar Habor Fire Station: Warming center, Bar Harbor, 37 Firefly Lane. Open indefinitely.
Hancock: Blue Town Hill Office: Warming center, Blue Hill, 18 Union Street.
Hancock: Brooklin Fire Department: Warming center, Brooklin, 25 Bay Road.
Hancock: Brooksville Fire Department: Warming center, Brooksville, 2199 Coastal Road.
Hancock: Miles Lane School: Warming Shelter, Bucksport, 100 Miles Lane.
Hancock: Ellsworth Midle School: Emergency Shelter, Ellsworth, 20 Forrest Avenue.
Hancock: Hancock Congregational Church: Warming center, Hancock, 1368 Route 1. Opening 11 A.M.; closing TBD
Hancock: Orland Fire Department Warming Center: Warming center, Orland, 91 School House Road. Opening 11 A.M.; Closing TBD
Hancock: Sullivan-Sorrento Recreation Center: Warming center, Sullivan, 1776 Route 1. Opening 11 a.m.; closing TBD
Kennebec: Augusta Civic Center: American Red Cross emergency shelter, Augusta, 76 Community Dr. Opening 5 p.m.; open until power back on. Shelter providing meals, blankets, and cots, while people must provide own pillows, sheets, medications. Pet-friendly, with owners are responsible for pets feeding and walking. Bring cages if available.
Kennebec: Helen Thompson Elementary School: Warming center, West Gardiner, 309 Spears Corner Road. Open today from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Kennebec: Winthrop Ambulance Base: Warming center, Winthrop, 31 Old Western Ave. (Old Winthrop Health Center). Open today from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Kennebec: Faith Christian Church: Warming center, Gardiner, 280 Brunswick Ave. Kitchen, shower and bathrooms are available. Opening today at 3 p.m.
Knox: Hope Fire Station: Warming Center, Hope, 475 Camden Road.
Lincoln: Alna Fire Department: Warming shelter, Alna, Route 218. Mainly warming shelter, but will accept overnights. Bring cot, bedding, medications, personal items, and food for your own consumption. It will remain open throughout the duration of the power outages for Alna.
Lincoln: Dresden Fire Department: Warming center, Dresden, 100 Patterson Road. Will remain open throughout the duration of the power outages for Dresden.
Lincoln: Faith Baptist Church: Warming center, Newcastle, Mills Road. Will remain open as long as there is a need.
Lincoln: Wiscasset Fire Department: Warming Center, Wiscasset, Route 1. Will remain open throughout the duration of the power outages for Wiscasset.
Penobscot: Brewer Municipal Auditorium: Emergency Shelter, Brewer, 203 State Street
Penobscot: Newburgh Community Shelter: 2220 Western Avenue. Emergency shelter, pet shelter (bring food, cages if available). Cots and food available, bring own blankets, personal items, medications. Will stay open as long as needed.
Waldo: Troy Howard Middle School: Emergency Shelter, Pet Shelter, Belfast, 173 Lincolnville Avenue
Waldo: Isleboro Community Center: Warming center, Isleboro, 103 Pendleton Point Road.
Washington: Washington County Community College: Emergency Shelter, Calais, 1 College Drive
The Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) safety factors for running generators.
Place generators outdoors in the fresh air
Make a plan for how to keep your generator dry and protected from ice and snow so you are not tempted to bring it inside a garage or other enclosed structure. Generators also pose a risk of shock and electrocution, especially in wet conditions. Dry your hands before touching a generator.
Ensure the generator is at least 15 feet away from home windows or doors
Ensure the generator is not placed in an enclosed or semi-enclosed space (such as basement, cellar bulkhead, attached garage) where carbon monoxide can build up to dangerous levels.
Use kerosene heaters in a well ventilated room, by either keeping doors to other rooms open or keeping a window partially open (at least 1 inch)
Use only K-1 grade fuel in kerosene heaters. Follow instructions for setting the wick height.
Do not use outdoor cooking devices indoors such as gas or charcoal grills or gas camp stoves.
Do not use indoor gas cooking stoves for heat.
Power line crews from Central Maine Power and out of state continued to work around the clock during the holiday, bringing the gift of power to thousands who were affected by the ice storm.
Still, tens of thousands remained without power on Christmas morning. One death, a case of carbon monoxide poisoning in Knox, was being attributed to the storm and a Whitefield couple was hospitalized Wednesday after being overcome from carbon monoxide from a generator in an attached garage.
Christmas morning was bright but cold, with temperatures around 5 degrees and a wind chill of 11 below in Augusta and Waterville, according to Margaret Curtis, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray. More snow is predicted for Thursday.
Northern Franklin County escaped the worst of the ice storm, but faced dangerous wind chills early Christmas morning, with readings of between 20 and 30 below on Christmas morning, according to the weather service.
On Wednesday night in Waterville and Augusta, the low was expected to be about 10 degrees, with Thursday afternoon bringing another two to four inches of snow.
“It’s not a major storm,” Curtis said.
Temperatures will rise late in the week, and could approach the freezing mark on Friday and Saturday, potentially ending the cold snap that has helped to exacerbate the power outages.
“Hopefully, that will help with some of the ice on the trees,” Curtis said.
On Tuesday night, Central Maine Power estimated that 123,000, or about one in four of its customers, had lost power at some point during the ice storm, which began downing branches and power lines Sunday morning.
CMP’s workforce of about 200 crews was joined by about 140 crews from Canada, Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut, New Hampshire and New York.
John Carroll, spokesman for CMP, said the company had established a goal of restoring all power by Thursday evening, but he cautioned that obstacles could still slow the process.
“It’s a goal, not a promise,” he said.
In a press release Wednesday night, Carroll said, “With help from companies from Canada and throughout the northeast, we have five times our normal number of line crews, and they have made steady progress in every county affected by the storm.
“The work will continue through the night, but we realize that’s not much comfort to those customers facing another cold night.”
The CMP restoration effort included 1,800 personnel on Christmas Day including 455 line crews and 330 tree crews. CMP reported that it had at least one full restoration team on every circuit serving every community with outages.
Rather than go to one of the many shelters opening in the region, many of those who lost power resorted to burning wood or using generators to get through the loss of service.
Vaughn Tuttle said he lost power at his West River Road home in Waterville Monday night, and fired up his wood stove to compensate for the loss of heat.
“We did just like we did in ‘98,” he said.
Tuttle said his power was restored early Tuesday morning.
On Waterville’s Morrill Avenue, Jim Dickson said he, too, lost power for about 12 hours on Monday night. He and his family spent the family at his father-in-law’s house in Oakland, and then borrowed a generator to use until the power was restored Tuesday morning.
The ice storm that started with freezing rain over the weekend and continued throughout the day Monday lingered in the area longer than anticipated, adding weight to already heavy power lines and making conditions for travel difficult leading up to Christmas.Trees blockade Belgrade neighborhood
(Continued on page 2)
click image to enlarge
Staff photo by Michael G. Seamans STORM RECOVERY: Chris Devine, far right, hauls a sled of gifts with his daughter Jordan, 11, and step son Derek Gervais, 20, far left, carrying gas for the generator on Maplehurst Lane in Belgrade on Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. The Devine's lost power on Monday and haul their supplies in on sled. Trees and power lines are down on both sides of their driveway essentially making it impossible to drive in. Luckily they weren't home when the trees fell during the storm affording them the opportunity to drive to town for gas and other essentials for life off the grid.