Central Maine Power Prepares Winter Storm, Wind

Resources staged across state to prepare

AUGUSTA, Maine— February 7, 2020— Central Maine Power Co. (CMP) is closely monitoring weather forecasts and preparing to respond in the face of a variety of winter weather conditions and wind conditions anticipated Thursday.

Based on current forecasts for heavy wet snow, rain and high winds moving into the state overnight Wednesday, the company has directed all line crews and support staff to report for duty very early Thursday. In addition to 85 CMP line crews available to respond, the company has also secured the support of approximately 70 in-state contractor line crews, with an additional 50 crews available from Connecticut, including from CMP’s sister company UI.   

“CMP is carefully tracking this storm and will dedicate our resources to the parts of the state where wet snow and wind could potentially present a risk for outages,” said Kevin Elwell, director, Electric Distribution for CMP.

CMP has also been coordinating preparedness efforts with the Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), and county Emergency Management agencies to ensure downed line and debris-clearing priorities are followed in local communities.

Customers are advised that CMP has been experiencing a technical issue on Wednesday in the company’s contact center where calls are currently not coming through from the phone carrier. The company is working with the carrier to resolve the issue and encourages customers to use the company’s website: www.cmpco.com to report outages. For electrical emergencies such as for electrical emergencies like lines down, arcing, sparking or fires, call us at 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:

  • Enroll in the free CMP Alerts service, which provides the latest information about power outages by text message, email, or voice message.
  • 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. 

Restoration priorities:

  • CMP follows an orderly process when restoring service that emphasizes safety and seeks to make effective use of resources.
  • CMP’s immediate concern after a storm is public safety. Restoration teams work with towns and the state to de-energize downed lines, clear roads and restore previously identified critical facilities such as hospitals and shelters.
  • Next, CMP focuses on assessing damage and repairing the backbone of the electrical system: substations, transmission lines, circuits and primary lines. Crews focus on locations where they can restore large numbers of customers at once.
  • Then, crews restore equipment and lines that serve smaller groups of customers.
  • Finally, crews focus on restoring remaining service lines to individual homes and buildings until every customer has service. This phase may begin while higher-priority work is already underway.

If you lose service:

  • To report an outage, visit Outage Central at cmpco.com. Customers may also report an outage using CMP’s 24/7 automated phone system at 800.696.1000.
  • Keep sensitive electronic appliances such as computers, TVs and stereos plugged into a surge protector, or unplug them. They could be damaged if a power surge occurs when electricity is restored.
  • Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed. For information about food safety, visit http://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/charts/refridg_food.html.
  • Never use a stove or oven, or an outdoor grill or heater, as an indoor space heater to stay warm. Only use space heaters intended for indoor use inside or in enclosed spaces, following the manufacturer’s instructions. If you are unable to keep your home safely heated, call Maine 211 for resources.

For customers with generators:

  • Hire a licensed electrician to install permanent generators and transfer switches.
  • Properly ground all portable generators.
  • Carefully read and observe all instructions in your generator’s operating manual.
  • Never run a generator indoors, or even in an open garage.
  • If your carbon monoxide detector goes off – get out of the building immediately and call 911.
  • Do not store fuel indoors or try to refuel a generator while it’s running.
  • Refer to CMP’s web page on generator 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 website.

 

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About CMP: Central Maine Power Company (CMP), a subsidiary of AVANGRID, Inc., is Maine’s largest electricity transmission and distribution utility. Established in 1899 and based in Augusta, Maine, CMP serves approximately 624,000 customers across 346 communities in central and southern Maine. It operates approximately 23,500 miles of distribution lines and 2,900 miles of transmission lines. Over the last decade, the company has invested approximately $2.6 billion in Maine system infrastructure. In 2019, CMP was named Large Business of the Year by the Kennebec Valley United Way. For more information, visit www.cmpco.com.

 

About AVANGRID: AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR) is a leading, sustainable energy company with approximately $33 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states. AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving 3.2 million customers in New York and New England. Avangrid Renewables owns and operates 7.2 gigawatts of electricity capacity, primarily through wind power, with a presence in 22 states across the United States. AVANGRID employs approximately 6,500 people. AVANGRID supports the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals and was named among the World’s Most Ethical Companies in 2019 by the Ethisphere Institute. For more information, visit www.avangrid.com.


Media Contact:

Catharine Hartnett

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