Staff photo/Mark Putnam
PRESQUE ISLE — Officials with Emera Maine held a ribbon cutting and reception Friday to celebrate the installation of a new transformer at the Flo’s Inn Substation in Presque Isle. The transformer is needed to provide electric system reliability in northern Maine.
This new piece of equipment is now one of three transformers that provide power to Aroostook County. Having this new transformer online allows for regular maintenance to occur on the other two older transformers without disruption of electricity to the region.
A transformer is an electrical device that transfers electricity between one or more circuits. In this case, the transformer will serve about 34,000 customers in northern Maine.
“We’re committed to bringing safe, reliable power to our customers,” said Alan Richardson, Emera Maine president and COO.
“This is one of several needed projects that will improve reliability for our northern Maine customers. Some of our infrastructure is aging and we are making investments to ensure reliability while also getting the most of existing infrastructure,” he said.
Local business representatives joined Emera Maine in support of the project, including Theresa Fowler, executive director of the Central Aroostook Chamber of Commerce.
“This project is so important to the businesses of this region,” said Fowler. “Keeping our businesses up and running is the key to their success and we need electricity to do that.”
Tim Doak, facilities engineer with The Aroostook Medical Center, expressed his organization’s appreciation for Emera Maine’s reliability record and commitment to meeting and exceeding the region’s energy needs.
“While losing electric power is an inconvenience for residential users and an expensive loss of production for business users, it is a matter of life and death for our hospital. Investments like the one we see here today will increase the likelihood of positive outcomes and experiences for our patients.”
The new transformer was successfully installed, tested and placed in service over the summer.
Emera Maine, the state’s second-largest electric utility, delivers electricity to 154,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers across 9,350 square miles in five counties in eastern and northern Maine.