Dispatchers at the Waldo County Regional Communications Center in Belfast fielded an unusually high volume of calls as Tropical Storm Irene passed through Waldo County Sunday, Aug. 28.

According to Director Owen Smith, WCRCC, which directs all 911 and non-emergency calls to police and fire departments and other local and state officials around the county, typically receives between 75 and 80 calls on a Sunday.

During a 24-hour period beginning Sunday morning — a timeframe roughly coinciding with the strongest winds and rains from Irene — WCRCC received 220 calls. Exactly half of these came in between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sunday, when Smith said phones could be heard ringing in the background as dispatchers directed the complaints to local officials.

Below are excerpts of notes taken by dispatchers from a random sample of calls received during that four-hour stretch. For each of the incoming calls listed below, there were as many as eight additional outgoing transmissions — by radio, phone, or in some cases both — from the Communications Center dispatcher to local officials and Central Maine Power.

[Editor’s note: Comments are reproduced here as they were originally written, during the storm, including spelling and punctuation errors. Where necessary, additions were made for clarity. These appear in brackets.]

• 6:12 p.m., Waldo — States they were driving on rte 137 in Waldo and a tree fell on their vehicle…the windshield smashed, no injuries, they are blocking the road.

• 6:31 p.m., Troy — Lisa [Chase, Troy Volunteer Fire Department] states that a tree limb has taken down the wires between poles 6 and 7. .gave to [WCRCC staff member] to call CMP.

• 6:39 p.m., Montville — Tree on wires, wires are down…pole 12, tree down blocking rd, advised CMP, they are clearing the scene, nothing they [local crews] can do.

• 6:43 p.m., Unity — Utility pole in front of unitel on fire.

• 6:43 p.m., Belfast — Cathy [Belfast Harbor Master Katherine Pickering] advising a boat broke loose, it is on the shore by Harbor Hill and they already know about it.

• 6:44 p.m., Palermo — [Caller] reporting that there is a wire down in the road, someone put cones on it but she is afraid that the cones are going to get blown over and someone is going to get decapitated, she has made CMP aware.

• 6:48 p.m., Montville — advised pole floating just hung on by the wires, they will break eventually.. CMP called

• 6:54 p.m., Burnham — […] reporting wires down in yard and tree on top of wires not sure if live. She has called CMP and given her account number to report this but just got recording.

• 6:57 p.m., Winterport — States there is tree blocking rd with power lines partially suspended in air…broke supports on house…WPAM checked it….think there should be barricades because people are getting stuck in dtich going around. Follow up: advising they rigged it up and hopefully it will hold

• 6:59 p.m., Freedom — Reporting tree on both wires and fire department didn’t dare to touch it

• 7:00 p.m., Thorndike — [Thorndike Fire Department] advising of tree blocking road, they are headed there now to remove.

• 7:01 p.m., Morrill — There is a tree on wires just over the Belfast line by pole 18 no need for fire [department] just let CMP know

• 7:03 p.m., Troy — [Caller] reporting tree lines in road, unknown if sparking or smoking. Follow up: troy advising no hazards there.

• 7:08 p.m., Northport — Wires down across road.

• 7:20 p.m., Morrill — [Caller] reporting large pine on wires, no sparking or smoke at this time

• 7:20 p.m., Winterport — Two large maples across the road […] not on wires need to be removed.

• 7:34 p.m., (unknown – Knox or Morrill) — She is out of power and unknown if she has enough oxygen to last her through the outage. Care Center would like a welfare check done on her. Follow up: [Official at scene] advising they have 13 hours of oxygen left. If they still don’t have power when it gets closer call us back and we will go from there.

• 7:52 p.m., Prospect — [Local official is en route] to tree down in the road