Snow, high winds strike one-two punch on Aroostook County

6 years ago

Crews from Emera Maine restored power to most of the nearly 3,000 customers who lost power after high winds blew across Aroostook County Saturday evening into Sunday morning.

The County was hit with a one-two punch over the weekend, as a storm brought 2-4 inches across the northern Maine early morning into Saturday afternoon, followed by the high winds that brought trees and limbs down on power lines.

About 2 inches fell in Fort Kent and Madawaska, 3.2 inches in the Caribou and Presque Isle area, and 6 inches in the Patten region before the snow storm ended, according to the National Weather Service.

Then, wind gusts of up to 50 miles per hour struck northern Maine late Saturday into Sunday. Emera Maine crews restored power to most customers by 11 a.m., but the utility company reported 282 still without electricity at that hour.

According to Emera’s live outage map, the majority of the outages were in central and northern Aroostook, with 125 in Squa Pan Township, 45 in Winterville, and 23 in Westmanland. Most towns in central Aroostook saw scattered outages of less than 20.

Wind speeds were expected to diminish Sunday afternoon and Emera Maine officials anticipated restoring power to most everyone else during that time.

The official start of winter might not be until late December, but northern Maine has already seen significant snowfall come to the region. On Oct. 24, 10 inches of snow, was recorded in Merrill, 9 inches in Dyer Brook and 8.5 inches in Ludlow in the southern Aroostook area. NWS records show that Caribou broke its previous record for that date of 1.3 inches in 1981 with 2 inches.

For many folks who are from Aroostook County, the first snow falls of the season evoke fond memories of their childhoods. Katherine Smith-Lariza, who now lives in Portland but grew up in Presque Isle, made a trip to the public library on Saturday while visiting family members. She noted that seeing the miles of snow in Aroostook County quickly reminded her of why she still calls Presque Isle her “home.”

“When I was in high school I used to go running in the mornings and I remember it would be so quiet and peaceful,” Smith-Lariza said. “It’s still like that today.”

Although Aroostook County will see a relief from harsher weather starting Sunday afternoon, the NWS is anticipating a mix of snow and rain to fall throughout the region on Tuesday, though they do not yet have predicted precipitation totals, according to NWS Meteorologist Donnie Dumont