News Feature

Originally published in Island Ad-Vantages, November 1, 2012
Hurricane Sandy knocks out power, some trees

by Faith DeAmbrose and Jessica Brophy

Despite frenzied preparations including boarding up windows and pulling boats out of the water, the area has been spared most of the damage expected from Hurricane Sandy, according to local officials.

Overall, things could have been a lot worse, said Stonington Town Manager Kathleen Billings-Pezaris. “We fared pretty good,” she said on Tuesday morning after the storm. “There were a few trees down in different areas, and we’re still doing a few cleanups.”

Stonington Harbormaster Steven Johnson said there was “no news” to come out of the storm. “We had a skiff sink, but that was because the pump was attached backwards and was pumping water into the boat,” he said.

Johnson said one sailboat had some tattered sails that had come loose from the jig, but that the boat was still attached to the mooring and there were no serious problems.

Power was knocked out for more than 86,000 customers statewide, according to a press release from the state. Most of those were in Southern Maine. According to Bangor Hydro’s website, as of 7 a.m. on Tuesday, more than 2,600 customers remained without power in Hancock County. There were spotty power outages both Island-wide and in various areas during Monday and into Tuesday.

The Department of Marine Resources shut down all shellfish harvest as of 12:01 a.m. on Tuesday, October 30, because of “pollution expected from heavy rainfall and coastal flooding caused by Hurricane Sandy.” No date for a lift on the ban was given.

“We were lucky,” said Billings-Pezaris, who said she had heard the winds were “pretty wild” down at the shore during the early hours of Tuesday.

An unofficial report from Libby Hill in Stonington said wind gusts reached 50 miles per hour Monday night.

In Deer Isle, emergency crews were out early Tuesday morning responding to a downed power line on the Dow Road. First Selectmen Neville Hardy said he was not aware of any damage to assets in Deer Isle and as of late Tuesday morning had yet to hear of any problems as a result of the storm.