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December 27, 2013

Slow recovery from weekend ice storm stretches on

GARDINER, Maine — Utility officials said it could be days before power is restored to everyone after a weekend ice storm that turned out the lights from Michigan to Maine and into Canada.

People shivered for a seventh day as a new storm blew through the upper Midwest and Northeast, shutting down part of the Pennsylvania Turnpike after a pileup involving 35 vehicles. Ten people were hospitalized with injuries from the crash. Another pileup on Interstate 78 in eastern Pennsylvania involving 25 to 30 vehicles sent 25 people to hospitals.

In Michigan, where about half a million homes and businesses lost power at the storm’s peak, utilities reported that 97,000 customers remained without power Thursday evening and said it could be Saturday before all electricity is restored.

In Maine, more snow added to the misery for utility crews working long hours in eastern Maine and parts of the state’s interior.

Most utility customers in Maine were expected to have their lights on by week’s end, but there were some pockets where damage was so severe, it could take until New Year’s Day.

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