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Central Maine Power Company, 83 Edison Drive, Augusta, ME 04336 (207) 622-NEWS 

Corporate Communications - corpcomm@cmpco.com 

Release: Immediate  

 

CMP Outages Reach 50,000 Customers As Icing Continues to Cause Damage

 

AUGUSTA, Maine, December 23, 2013, 5 p.m. — Central Maine Power Company (CMP), a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, reports that more than 54,000 customer accounts are without service this afternoon, and the company expects additional icing to continue into the evening. Ice as much as an inch thick has coated tree branches, power lines, and roads, making travel difficult and causing power interruptions. Androscoggin, Hancock, Kennebec, Knox, and Waldo Counties are the hardest hit.

 

“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. “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.”

 

Even when the restoration gets underway, the company warns that progress may be slowed by continued new outages and hazardous working conditions. Once the company 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 as of this evening to prepare for at least one night without power.

 

Here is a list of outages by county:

 

 County  Customers Out
 Kennebec

 19,455

 Waldo

 14,044

 Lincoln

 4,224

 Hancock

 4,184

 Knox

 3,300

 Androscoggin

 2,641

 Sagadahoc

 2,543

 Somerset

 2,418

 Franklin

 1,006

 Oxford

 434

 Penobscot

 86

 Cumberland

          14

 CMP

 54,349

 

  • During a power interruption:
    • To report a power interruption, contact CMP at 1.800.696.1000. Our telephone system automatically creates a work order and sets the stage for dispatch of crews to the outage location.
    • When using an emergency heating source, like a wood stove, fireplace, or kerosene heater, keep fuels away from the flames and be sure to ventilate properly.
    • Never use grills or camp stoves indoors — they can give off dangerous gases.
    • Keep refrigerators and freezers closed as much as possible. Most food will last 24 hours or longer if you minimize the opening of refrigerator and freezer doors.

 

  • For customers with generators:
    • Hire a licensed electrician to install permanent generators and transfer switches.
    • Make sure portable generators are properly grounded.
    • Carefully read and observe all instructions in your generator’s operating manual.
    • Never run a generator indoors, or even in an open garage.
    • Do not store fuel indoors or try to refuel a generator while it’s running.

 

The company urges customers to use caution if they see downed lines.
 
“Everyone should stay clear of any downed power lines or fallen trees that may be tangled in the lines,” says spokesperson Gail Rice. “All downed lines should be considered live and dangerous. Customers should leave the clean-up to our crews, who are trained and equipped to handle these situations safely.”
 
CMP also reminds drivers to use caution when approaching utility crews. The working conditions are difficult, and the workers appreciate everyone’s consideration for their safety.
 
Additional information on storm safety and restoration, including a town-by-town listing of outages in the CMP service area with an area map, can be found on CMP’s web site at www.cmpco.com.

 

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About Central Maine Power Company (CMP): Central Maine Power Company, a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, is Maine’s largest electricity transmission and distribution utility. The company delivers about 9 billion kilowatt hours of electricity annually to more than 600,000 homes and businesses, representing about 80% of Maine’s annual consumer sales of electricity. The company has been ranked #1 in customer satisfaction six times by J.D. Power and Associates. For more information, visit cmpco.com .

 

About Iberdrola USA: Iberdrola USA, a subsidiary of global energy leader Iberdrola, S.A., is an energy services and delivery company serving more than 2.4 million customers in upstate New York and New England. For more information about Iberdrola USA, visit www.iberdrolausa.com.