FSJ News Updates,
Maine will be spared the worst of Hurricane Fiona, which will hit Nova Scotia and Canada’s Maritimes this weekend. Still, some communities are expecting wind gusts of 55 to 60 miles per hour and large waves.
One NWS Caribou Projection wind gust map showed the town of Eastport, Maine receiving a gust of 61 miles per hour.
High wind warnings and storm warnings were issued Friday from northern Maine south to coastal Washington and Hancock counties, with Fiona’s effects most pronounced after midnight Saturday.
“People should avoid being outside in wooded areas and around trees and branches. If possible, stay in the lower levels of your home during the storm and avoid windows. Use caution if you must drive,” the warning said as of 3 p.m. day. Friday.
“Because these strong wind gusts are associated with a hurricane, we obviously take it very seriously,” said Marissa Minor, chief communications specialist for Versant Power, which serves eastern and northern Maine, adding that the company is urging customers to prepare.
“Prepare their batteries and flashlights, some water, non-perishable food,” she said, adding that Versant has “standby crews ready to go.”
“We have also increased staffing in customer service, tree crews ready to respond within the next day, we also have contract crews available,” she noted.
Elsewhere in Maine, city officials in Portland said three cruise ships would depart there due to bad weather, while in Bar Harbor the harbor master’s office said another cruise ship would skip a port stop there and go to Boston instead.
In Stonington and Isle au Haut, ferries and mail boats changed their schedules to skip the Duck Harbor stop for Saturday, and management decided to suspend all trips that day as well.
In Eastport, ships moved behind the breakwater, according to Chris Gardner, executive director of the Eastport Port Authority.
“The weather discussion is always a discussion here in Downeast Maine,” he said, adding that most sailors there were used to storms often stronger than the weather expected over the weekend.
“We usually see a blow like this every year,” he said.
A high surf advisory was issued for southern Maine on Friday with waves expected to reach seven feet in many coastal communities.
As of 5 p.m. Friday, Hurricane Fiona was a Category 3 hurricane with winds of 125 mph.