HOULTON, Maine — The powerful winds blowing through Maine over the past several days caused power outages across the state, but are not unusual for this time of year, according to meteorologists.
The winds were caused by low-pressure areas originating in the Canadian Maritime provinces, Derek Schoeter, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Gray, said Tuesday morning. The cause of the winds is similar to what spurs winter Nor’easters, although these are on a much smaller scale.
“Yesterday it was gusting around 40 miles per hour, but it’s kind of a nuisance wind,” Schroeter said. “It’s below the wind advisory threshold.”
Such strong winds are not abnormal for this time of year, as the seasons begin to shift to the spring weather, he said.
“We’re still coming out of the winter season, which is usually when the jet stream is most active with the multiple storm tracks aimed at New England,” Schroeter said. “As we shift into the summer months, the jet stream retreats northward into Canada. Usually we don’t see that until during the peak of summer, but during the spring I wouldn’t say it’s unusual to have strong low pressure.”
More than 4,000 customers of Versant Power across the state were affected by the winds, according to Versant spokesperson Judy Long. Outages affected Versant customers across Aroostook, Hancock and Penobscot counties, she said.
“Versant Power customers in the Fort Kent area experienced a few outages on Thursday and shortly after midnight Friday related to winds. The cumulative number affected was about 3,000,” Long said. “Nearly 900 customers in the Gouldsboro area and nearly 600 customers in the Lincoln area also were affected by wind-related outages.”