HERMON, Maine — Lightning strikes are cited as the cause of power outages early Friday evening that affected thousands of Central Maine Power Co. customers in Penobscot and Somerset counties, a utility dispatcher said.

At the peak of the outages, nearly 8,000 customers were without electricity. The dispatcher said repair crews quickly isolated the problems, and power has been restored to nearly 6,400 accounts as of 6:15 p.m.

The Penobscot County outages occurred shortly after 5:30 p.m. and affected customers in Hermon, Carmel, Newport, Dixmont and other towns in that area. Somerset County had fewer outages at about 630, affecting customers in Jackman, Palmyra, St. Albans and nearby town, according to CMP’s live outage map.

The estimated restoration time for most customers is 7 p.m.