Thousands of Mainers remain in the dark after Irene’s wrath

Posted Aug. 31, 2011, at 12:38 p.m.
Last modified Aug. 31, 2011, at 8:57 p.m.

NORTHEAST HARBOR, Maine — Maine utility officials are continuing their work in the wake of Tropical Storm Irene, and a downed power line on Mount Desert Island left even more customers without electricity on Wednesday.

Bangor Hydro-Electric Co. reported Wednesday morning that a downed power line in Northeast Harbor left 1,229 customers in the dark.

Meanwhile, Central Maine Power remained hard at work, cutting the number of customers still without electricity to 17,500 by 9 p.m. Wednesday.

Central Maine Power spokesman John Carroll said in a press release that a bulk of the remaining outages are in York and Cumberland counties. About 280,000 CMP customers had lost electrical service at some point because the weekend storm.

“We expect to get the number of outages down to about 20,000 outages by late tonight,” Tom Depeter, CMP director of operations, said in the release. “We had set a goal of getting down to 25,000 outages, and with the progress we’ve made so far, it looks like we’ll beat that by the end of the day.”

Meanwhile, on MDI, customers began to phone Bangor Hydro late Wednesday morning reporting outages and a crew was en route, according to a Bangor Hydro press release issued at noon.

The release indicated that power was expected to be restored within three to four hours. It did not indicate what caused the power line to fall.

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