BAR HARBOR — Winds, rain and lightning from Tropical Storm Arthur contributed to a 14-hour power outage at many of the town’s hotels and eateries on one of the busiest weekends of the year.
Hotels including the Wonderview, Bluenose Inn, Bar Harbor Inn, the Harborside, West Street and Atlantic Oceanside were without power all day on Saturday, July 5, along with a number of restaurants and shops. The loss of power also knocked out several AT&T cell towers downtown leaving customers without reliable service until Monday afternoon.
By Tuesday, hoteliers and other business owners were still counting their losses.
“I think you could easily put the cost at over $1 million for everyone involved,” said West Street Hotel representative Eben Salvatore. “That was a huge, huge hit for people.”
The reasons for the widespread outage are not clear at this time. It is known that the Bar Harbor Inn lost power early in the morning when a tree branch took down a wire near the hotel. Every hotel along Eden and West Street lost power around 7:15 a.m. and did not regain it until after 9 p.m. that night. Also caught in the outage were shops and restaurants along the western side of Cottage Street near Main Street, and Main Street from Cottage to West Streets.
Emera Maine spokesman Bob Potts said he could not pinpoint the reasons for the power outage. But he said that the length of time involved in the response was a direct result of the storm, which at its peak took out power to 35,000 customers in Emera’s service area, all the way from Bar Harbor to Bangor to Lubec and Caribou in Northern Maine.
“Everything was happening all at once across our entire service territory,” Potts said. “Crews were scrambling to get equipment everywhere.”