AUGUSTA — A day after U.S. Coast Guard cutters completed their mission of breaking ice on the Kennebec River, officials on Friday were monitoring the broken ice and its progress down the river.

“There’s a lot of ice floating around, and if it can’t get out, it might cause a jam somewhere,” Sean Goodwin, Kennebec County Emergency Management Agency director, said Friday. “People still have to keep an eye on the river. It’s not ice-free.”

From Merrymeeting Bay north to Gardiner, the path of the breakers is still marked by slabs and chunks of ice floating free in the river.

Goodwin said flushing them down the river might take several days, depending on the river’s flow.

While weather watchers were keeping an eye on the nor’easter threatening southern New England up through the Portland area on Friday, the powerful storm was not expected to have much effect in central Maine.

Over the next week or so, the weather is expected to contribute to the slow melting of ice across the region.

Michael Cempa, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, said temperature over the next week is expected to be more seasonal, with highs in the 40s and lows in the 20s, and no significant precipitation.

“That’ll keep a slow melt going,” Cempa said. “There are no real warmups expected like we have seen over the past week.”

At the U.S. Geological Survey river gauge at the Calumet Bridge at Old Fort Western in Augusta, the data over the last week show that the water level is fluctuating with the tides. Data collected earlier this winter suggested that the ice jam that formed in the river south of Augusta starting in mid-January was deep enough underwater to block the flow of water up the river from the change in tides.

Goodwin said that tidal fluctuation will help clear the channel of broken ice.

As the ice jam continues to erode under the influence of warmer air and water, the channel created will give those chunks and slabs of ice a path downriver.

Goodwin said some ice has come up onto the wharf at Foggy Bottom, a marina and campground along the river in Farmingdale, and it’s visible from Route 9 in Chelsea across the river.

Those who have been monitoring the ice jam have seen a red residential dumpster caught up in the ice off Hallowell. The dumpster now has disappeared. Goodwin said a company official has asked for help retrieving it, but there was nothing to be done.

Jessica Lowell — 621-5632

[email protected]

Twitter: @JLowellKJ

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