Bar Harbor officials prepare for Hurricane Lee this weekend

Mainers are expected to start feeling the effects of Lee Friday night into Sunday morning.
Published: Sep. 13, 2023 at 5:22 PM EDT
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BAR HARBOR, Maine (WABI) - Like most tourists, Hurricane Lee is making a stop in Bar Harbor before the summer ends.

“We got an incoming storm, Hurricane Lee, which last I checked was a category one, looks like it may be downgraded to a tropical storm by the time it hits here. Obviously, it’s still too early to tell,” says Bar Harbor Fire Chief Matthew Bartlett.

Mainers are expected to start feeling the effects of Lee Friday night into Sunday morning.

In preparation, town officials are working together to create a plan.

”We are preparing, we have plans,” says Bartlett. “We have an emergency management plan, emergency management team that will meet. The whole town staff is working together. So just to relay that we’re working on it, working as a team, to make sure we can continue to provide the services needed during the storm and to keep everybody safe.”

For Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Director Everal Eaton, the importance lies in the consistency. “From our side of mind, make sure that we’re working alongside the town, kind of avoid some of the confusion. Information that comes down the line, we’ll make sure to amplify that from the town on our social media pages.”

For residents, Chief Bartlett recommends stocking up on food, water, batteries, and flashlights as power outages may occur.

Better safe than sorry, the town is preparing - but not overreacting - to the storm’s threat.

“We are preparing for the event. We’re not getting stressed out, we’re keeping the calm sense in preparation,” explains Bartlett. “We’re hoping that we prepare all this and we don’t get to use it.”

“It’s easy to get caught up in the hype and the excitement of a weather event that has a name and what we would normally see on the Weather Channel, but if it wasn’t for them, people will just see it as a day for an umbrella and maybe a nice opportunity to do some shopping,” comments Eben Salvatore, Director of Operations at Bar Harbor Resorts. “If you follow the parks recommendations, you can go see some really nice waves that are kind of unique and special when there’s a storm offshore. So there’s really still things to do, despite the doom and gloom forecast.”