Bangor Hydro Extends Outage Restoration Timetable

John Krinjak

Updated 4 months ago

The ice storm is over, but power issues continue to pester the state.

At last check Bangor Hydro is reporting about 21,000 customers without power.

But Central Maine power still has more than 63,000 customers in the dark.

And those numbers have led Governor LePage to declare a state of emergency.

Bangor Hydro updated the public Tuesday on the outage situation now and the biggest trouble spots going forward.

“Primarily the Bangor area and Ellsworth and Washington County,” said Gerry Chasse, President and Chief Operating Officer of Bangor Hydro.

And as for when power could be fully restored–

“We expect that some customers may be out even beyond Friday,” said Chasse.

With the timetable now extended into the weekend, those without power should err on the side of caution.

“At this point we’re urging people to make a plan and not wait it out until power gets back. Just because worst case scenario it may be Friday or Saturday,” said Michelle Tanguay of Penobscot County Emergency Management.

The bitter cold has slowed down restoration because the ice has not had a chance to melt.

“The colder temperatures have allowed the ice to remain on those tree limbs and on the wires themselves and that creates an ongoing issue,” said Chasse.

Getting power back could be particularly slow in rural areas.

“We use a prioritization process. Typically picking up the largest amount of customers that we absolutely can first,” said Chasse.

So the smaller the outage, the longer power restoration could take-and officials know it couldn’t come at a worse time.

“Nobody wants to be without power over the holidays. We understand that,” said Susan Faloon of Bangor Hydro. “Most of our staff and our field crews are actually sacrificing their vacations and their holiday in an effort to get power restored.”