Release Date: 01-02-2018Bangor and Presque Isle, Maine — Emera Maine’s storm response team is keeping a watchful eye to the sky as a winter storm affecting much of the eastern United States heads north, likely bringing with it strong wind gusts along the coast and snowfall across much of Maine. The storm is expected to move into Emera Maine’s service territory on Thursday afternoon and last into early Friday morning. “Our biggest concern with this storm is the extreme cold,” said Tim Pease, Storm Manager. “While we are preparing to respond to any outages safely and quickly, we encourage customers to monitor the forecast and take necessary precautions to stay warm and safe.” Preparations include evaluating staffing needs both in the field and in the Customer Contact Center, fueling up trucks, snow sleds and ATVs, stocking up on storm kits and other supplies for field crews, and more. Emera Maine also will stage crews before the storm in case of difficult travel conditions within areas we anticipate will be hardest hit. Customers can do their part by planning ahead as well; helpful tips on how to prepare for a power outage are available on our website at www.emeramaine.com, then click on “Outages & Restoration” and “Be Prepared”. Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) also offers information on its website – www.maineprepares.com – on protection against the cold. The public is encouraged to contact 2-1-1 Maine for state and Red Cross emergency shelter information. Contact your town office for details on local community shelter options should they be needed. As the storm gets closer, MEMA’s Facebook page is also an excellent source of current information. The Emera Maine storm response team will continue to monitor the storm’s track and make adjustments as we prepare for a safe restoration. As always, customers are reminded to be mindful of the following safety hazards: NEVER touch a downed power line or a tree in contact with one. It is never safe to move lines out of the way or drive over the top of them. It is not possible to tell if a line is energized simply by looking at it. Follow manufacturer guidelines when using alternate heat sources or generators for safe use. Always be sure generators and space heaters are well ventilated, as these devices can generate carbon monoxide. Generators should be professionally installed to ensure they do not back-feed into the electrical system, putting both the public and our employees at risk. The public is urged to slow down or move over and change lanes, when possible, if approaching utility crews working on roadways, to ensure everyone's safety. Customers can get the latest outage information and view our live outage and restoration map at emeramaine.com. Outages can be reported online or by calling our Customer Contact Center at 1-855-EMERA-11 (1-855-363-7211) or 207-973-2000.