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Thousands still without power in Maritimes after storm hits region with winds, wet snow

Click to play video: 'Hundreds still in the dark following storm' Hundreds still in the dark following storm
WATCH: Roughly 6,000 customers are still without power after a rare sequence of transmission outages caused a blackout in much of Nova Scotia on Thursday. Elizabeth McSheffrey has more – Nov 30, 2018

Crews were slowly restoring power to thousands of homes in the wake of an East Coast storm that unleashed strong winds and heavy, wet snow Thursday.

Nova Scotia Power said about 10,000 customers were still without electricity midday Friday even after crews worked through the night to restore outages.

WATCH: An overnight snowfall left many New Brunswickers digging themselves out Thursday morning, and many thousands more without power. Callum Smith reports.

Click to play video: 'N.B. slammed with winter storm, knocking out power for thousands' N.B. slammed with winter storm, knocking out power for thousands
N.B. slammed with winter storm, knocking out power for thousands – Nov 29, 2018

READ MORE: Winter storm knocks out power for half of Nova Scotia Power’s customers, prompting criticism

At one point Thursday, almost 250,000 homes and businesses – half of Nova Scotia Power’s customers – were without electricity.

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In P.E.I., roughly 4,700 Maritime Electric customers were without power midday Friday, while 3,800 NB Power customers remained without power.

NB Power was asking those without power to unplug items, to speed the progress of restoration.

There were also some scattered outages remaining in Newfoundland and Labrador Friday.

Some utilities came under fire Thursday after widespread power outages prompted opposition leaders and online critics to call on the privately owned company to account.

Nova Scotia Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Houston said residents pay some of the highest power rates in the country and expect a reliable service.

The utility, owned by Halifax-based Emera Inc., said the wind and snow pulled down one of four high-voltage transmission lines that carry electricity from three power generation plants in Cape Breton to the Nova Scotia mainland.

Nova Scotia Power CEO Karen Hutt said the remaining three lines could have handled the load, but the sagging wires went off-line when they started touching each other.

Crown-owned NB Power was also hit by an outage in Memramcook, N.B., where a transmission line links New Brunswick with Nova Scotia and P.E.I.

Nova Scotia NDP Leader Gary Burrill said Thursday’s “fairly run-of-the-mill” storm shouldn’t have caused such widespread blackouts.

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Much of the online chatter raised questions about the severity of the storm in Halifax.

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