Will Clark, of New Castle, photographs Portland Pier as it floods at high tide Sunday. Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Staff Photographer

Another storm pounded southern and central Maine on Sunday, combining heavy rain and high winds with an astronomical high tide to cause more flooding and power outages.

Thousands of Central Maine Power customers lost power along the coast, while flooding shut down businesses and closed roads. Meanwhile, at higher elevations inland, several inches of snow were reported.

First responders urged the public to avoid roads along the water, especially at high tide late Sunday morning. Ocean levels were high, while low spots everywhere resembled tiny ponds.

A man stops to photograph water as it floods onto a parking lot at Fisherman’s Wharf in Portland at high tide Sunday. Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Staff Photographer

Portland was hammered with 2.5 inches of rain that started falling at 1 a.m., said Jon Palmer, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Gray.

Downtown, Portland Pier was flooded, and the street was blocked off with orange cones. The flooding “seems to be coming in more regular,” said Brent Wooten, who works at the fish market. Others, including visitors from out of town, took photos of the flooded street.

J’s Oyster restaurant was again surrounded by water, though the restaurant is closed for a winter break. Farther down the pier, Luke’s Lobster delayed opening until the floodwaters receded and the street was clear.


Other rainfall amounts as of Sunday morning included 1.8 inches in Gray, 2.8 inches in Arundel and 2.9 inches in Gorham. “And we’ve had plenty of reports of an inch and a half of rain,” Palmer said.

Shortly before 11 a.m., the storm moved out from southern Maine, but coastal flooding in the afternoon remained a serious concern, especially after high tide, Palmer said.

In Old Orchard Beach, the town closed several roads due to flooding, including parts of West Grand Avenue, Temple Avenue, Randall Avenue and Clover Street, according to an OOB Fire Department Facebook post.

In Westbrook, the intersection at Cumberland and Park streets closed Sunday morning, and in Cumberland, traffic on Route 26 was reduced to one lane, Palmer said.

In Wells, several roads were closed, including Atlantic Avenue, Casino Square and Furbish Road, police said.

The storm delivered strong winds of 40 to 50 mph, with even higher gusts. Early Sunday, wind gusts were recorded at 64 mph in Kittery, 65 mph in New Harbor, 49 mph at the Portland International Jetport and 72 mph on an island off Rockland, Palmer said.


The wind died down in the afternoon, and at times, the sun appeared after the storm moved out.

There were substantial power outages Sunday, especially in coastal areas that were hit with the strongest winds.

Central Maine Power said crews were responding to outages, but workers cannot fix power lines when the winds are above 30 to 35 mph. CMP said downed trees had been reported in some areas.

Crews respond to damage from Sunday’s storm and work to restore power after a tree knocks down power lines in Windham earlier on Sunday. Central Maine Power Facebook photo

As of just after 4 p.m. Sunday, some 7,200 customers were without power, CMP reported. The majority of the outages were in Lincoln County, where 4,186 customers were without power. In Cumberland County, 1,599 customers were without power.

More than 25,226 customers had been without power as of late Sunday morning.

CMP reminded the public not to touch any downed wires. On its Facebook page, the company posted a photo of downed wires on fire in Windham. Crews were at the scene responding.

While rain fell in southern and central Maine, higher elevations received snow: 8 inches fell in Rangeley, 7.5 inches in Bethel and 5.5 inches in Carrabassett Valley. That snow should stick around until later in the week, when temperatures will get up into the high 30s and 40s.

Rain is not expected along the coast Monday or Tuesday, Palmer said, allowing Mainers to get some relief.

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