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Maine braces for Thursday nor'easter

STATEWIDE (WGME) -- The snow started to come down throughout southern Maine before noon on Thursday, and it's predicted to get heavier as the day goes on.

Snow intensity will increase during Thursday afternoon and evening with snow rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour.

Thursday evening we will likely change to sleet and freezing rain at the coast with a mix of snow and sleet inland. A change back to snow is likely by Friday morning.

The potential for mixing along the coastal plain will complicate snow totals there. 5-9 inches are expected in that area. 8-12 inches are expected Sebago Lake region, to Lewiston, to Augusta. Some sleet may mix in for period there as well.

Public works and CMP crews are making sure they are prepared for Thursday's storm.

CMP has more than 100 crews ready, 25 of those just returned to Maine Wednesday. They've been in Pennsylvania where they helped restore power to hundreds of thousands of people left in the dark following an ice storm last week.

Spokesman John Carroll says they're all back and ready to deal with problems the snow may cause here.

A reminder, if you do lose power, you want to make sure you have enough food and water. Have a battery operated flash light, make sure your cell phone is charged and keep generators a safe distance from your home and garage.

The storm is also affecting thousands of flights across the country, including those at the Portland Jetport. Most of the flights into and out of Portland are cancelled right now.