Broken insulators blamed for massive Waldo County power outageRestoration of power nearly complete; handful of outages remain
Augusta — Problems with a transmission line cut power to more than 16,000 Central Maine Power customers in 17 Waldo County towns Saturday morning, and thousands of customers were without power for hours throughout the day.
By just before 5 p.m., the total number of customers without power in Waldo County was just above 100 — approximately 54 in Frankfort and 65 in Winterport.
That was down from shortly after 2 p.m., when, according to information posted on CMP's website, the number of outages was approximately 10,500. A CMP spokesman confirmed that figure was an accurate, approximate total at that time.
CMP, according to its website, has a total of 23,738 customers in Waldo County.
While early reports from CMP indicated that the cause of the outage was unknown, the spokesman said mid-afternoon Saturday that the cause had been traced to broken insulators on a transmission line.
The spokesman said he did not know the exact location of the broken insulators, as transmission lines travel across the countryside, rather then distribution lines that follow roads and streets.
Although more than half of the towns in Waldo County were impacted, the highest number of outages seemed to be concentrated in communities along Penobscot Bay and the Penobscot River, and those immediately inland.
In Stockton Springs, for example, 1,006 customers — out of a total of 1,070 — were without power as of mid-Saturday afternoon. On Islesboro, for a time, all of the company's more than 900 customers were listed as not having any power.
All of CMP's 427 customers in Morrill were reportedly without power as of mid-Saturday afternoon also. Several other communities had nearly total power loss, too, according to the figures posted on CMP's website, and others had outage rates in the range of 90 percent or more, for a time.
Power first went out around 9:50 a.m., when brown outs were seen as far south as Camden and Rockport. According to CMP, no other counties were affected by the outage.
A complete list of outages is available on CMP's website.