CMP Crews Ready to Respond on Christmas - 4 p.m.
Lineworkers and support teams to work through holiday
AUGUSTA, ME — December 24, 2020 – Central Maine Power (CMP) is gearing up to respond to the third major wind storm this month on Christmas Day. Line and tree crews will be reporting for duty early Friday, as will hundreds of staff who support their work in the field. High winds with gusts forecast at 55-60 mph will move across the state early Friday morning with the potential to cause outages, particularly along the coast.
“Our employees have been adapting their holiday plans so that they will be on the job Christmas morning, working to ensure customer power is restored as quickly and safely as possible,” said David Flanagan, executive Board Chair of CMP. “Our storm support team members who provide information to customers, organize food and lodging, coordinate with local emergency officials, move equipment and supplies around the state – and many other storm tasks – are also prepared for holiday work.”
CMP has about 100 internal line crews, 90 tree crews and 75 contractor crews on deck to respond to restoration. Additional crews are available on Saturday if needed. The entire Eastern Seaboard will be impacted by this storm and demand for additional support crews will be competitive.
CMP has been planning its workforce and response plan by coordinating with local Emergency Management officials to be ready to clear local roads of any downed wires and debris, and to begin restoration as soon as possible should outages occur.
In restoring power, crews follow a priority process that ensures critical care facilities and hospitals are restored first, and then they make those repairs that will restore the largest numbers of customers at once. It may take time to accurately estimate restoration times across the service area as each repair requires an evaluation of the equipment, personnel and time needed to complete the work before an estimate can be communicated to customers. Customers who check the outage list on the website may see the term “assessing” while the scope of work is evaluated.
CMP offers storm preparation tips and a checklist on our website cmpco.com.
CMP reminds customers to remember the following if they have lost power:
- Stay away from downed lines. No line is safe to touch.
- Turn off or unplug major appliance and sensitive electronics.
- Never use range or outdoor stoves to heat your home.
- If you are in need of shelter or food, reach out to 211 for available resource.
CMP continues to observe all COVID-19 safety protocols in storm response including:
- Working in separate teams to minimize contact
- Restricting visitor access to company facilities
- Entering a customer residence only in the event of emergency and after assessing risk
- Maintaining appropriate social distancing in the field
- Allowing one employee per vehicle
- Wearing masks
Customers may use online tools, accessible at www.cmpco.com to report and monitor outages.
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.
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.
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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 636,000 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 $3.5 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 $36 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states. With headquarters in Orange, Connecticut, AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving more than 3.3 million customers in New York and New England. Avangrid Renewables owns and operates a portfolio of renewable energy generation facilities across the United States. AVANGRID employs approximately 6,600 people. AVANGRID supports the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals and was named among the World’s Most Ethical Companies in 2019 and 2020 by the Ethisphere Institute. For more information, visit www.avangrid.com.
- Catharine Hartnett
- 24/7 Media Hotline