Central Maine Power Company, 83 Edison Drive, Augusta, ME 04336 (207) 622-NEWS
Corporate Communications - firstname.lastname@example.org
Media Contact: Gail Rice (207) 622 NEWS
CMP Prepared for Late-Winter Storm
AUGUSTA, Maine, March 11, 2014 — Central Maine Power Company (CMP), a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, is getting ready for heavy snow and gusty winds forecast for the area on Wednesday into Thursday. Utility trucks are fueled and equipped, and CMP personnel are holding pre-storm planning sessions to discuss staffing levels and finalize storm-response plans.
“We’ve put our storm response plan into motion, and we’re watching the forecast closely,” said Gail Rice, spokesperson for Central Maine Power. “The wet snow forecast for Thursday could build up on tree limbs, power lines, and roadways. Combined with gusty winds, this could result in power interruptions and difficult travel, so we’re getting crews, equipment, and materials in place to respond.”
Twenty-five CMP crews, along with crews from contractors that often assist the utility during storms, have been in southeastern Pennsylvania restoring service under a mutual aid agreement. Both CMP and the contractors recalled the crews to make them available for Thursday’s forecast storm. They are due to arrive back in Maine late this afternoon.
The utility is coordinating its storm preparation efforts with other utilities in the North Atlantic Mutual Assistance Group, or NAMAG. It is also lining up contract crews to assist local crews if the storm causes widespread damage. CMP is also keeping the Maine Emergency Management Agency apprised on preparation efforts.
If outages occur, CMP urges customers to call the toll-free outage hotline: 1.800.696.1000.
CMP offers customers the following tips to prepare for the storm and stay safe and comfortable if power outages do occur.
Before a storm strikes:
Keep battery-operated flashlights and radios on hand, along with supplies of drinking water and non-perishable foods.
Make sure that smart phones, tablets, and other mobile devices are fully charged.
Fill your car’s fuel tank.
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,” said 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.