A “one-two” punch of weather left thousands of customers in central Maine without power overnight Wednesday and others without power into Thursday.

Central Maine Power Co. reported that just over 650 customers did not have power by Thursday evening, with the most locally in Franklin County — about 100 — and 64 in Somerset. Hundreds of CMP customers in Kennebec, Cumberland, Androscoggin and Oxford counties also reported power outages earlier in the day.

Company spokeswoman Gail Rice said Thursday morning that power outages Wednesday were caused by freezing rain that coated tree limbs in ice and felled wires. As crews finished restoring power from those problems, a line of severe storms moved through the state overnight and into Thursday morning, resulting in downed trees and more power cuts.

“It was kind of a one-two punch,” Rice said.

Roughly 9,900 customers were out of power at 6 a.m. Thursday, she added. There were numerous outages across the region overnight, including the Belgrade area, where residents lost power around 10 p.m. for about five hours; and the Athens area, where it went out around 6:45 p.m. and was out for eight hours.

By early afternoon Thursday, Waterville police had responded to power-related problems including a traffic light malfunction at the intersection of Main and Water streets just south of the downtown block.

Deputy Chief Charles Rumsey said two police officers directed traffic there for about 15 minutes until power was restored. Officers also went to other areas of the city where people reported traffic was moving more slowly than normal, but police did not need to direct traffic at those sites, according to Rumsey.

A fast-moving line of thunderstorms blew through a swath of southern and central parts of the state early Thursday morning, producing wind that gusted up to 60 mph, according to Tom Hawley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray.

“A very vigorous low pressure system moved through that spawned those thunderstorms,” Hawley said. “They were moving very quickly. That is why we had some pretty strong winds that caused damage and trees down,” he added.

The storm moved into western Maine around 3 a.m. and moved rapidly over the state, moving past Augusta and toward Waldo County by 4:30 a.m., according to Hawley. Thunderstorms in February are fairly unusual, and severe storms like the one Thursday morning are rare, Hawley added.

There will be unseasonably warm temperature, showers and fog Thursday, but cold air will move in later in the day and the temperature will dip below freezing Thursday night, which could produce black ice for the Friday morning commute, Hawley said.

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