Crews from Central Maine Power Co. replace two utility poles last Wednesday on Mill Street in Auburn after a fallen tree damaged the lines. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal

AUBURN — The Auburn Housing Authority is investigating a failed connection between a backup generator and boilers that provide heat to Barker Mill Arms housing complex in New Auburn as the possible cause of last week’s power outage that left the 111-unit complex without heat overnight.

Executive Director Martin Szydlowski said power was lost at the public housing unit for elderly and handicapped at about 7 p.m. Wednesday after a fallen tree on Mill Street damaged a power line.

Crews from Central Maine Power Co. were able to restore service at about 1 p.m. Thursday.

While the building’s generator kicked on as expected, it did not engage the boilers that provides heat for the complex. Szydlowski said his maintenance team must now figure out what happened and how to fix the problem.

Szydlowski said it is fortunate the weather was relatively mild, with daytime temperatures in the 40s and an overnight low of 30 degrees. He said no resident informed the housing authority the heat was out at the building until Thursday, when the Sun Journal called his office about complaints about the lack of heat.

“Call the work order number and we’ll go out there and figure out what’s wrong,” Szydlowski said, asking residents to call if they experience an outage.

Four other Auburn Housing Authority buildings have generators: Webster School Apartments, Lake Auburn Town House, Auburn Esplanade and Vincent Square Apartments, but none of the complexes reported a heating outage, according to Szydlowski, who added that those four complexes have generator switches allowing them to be connected to an additional generator, should there be an extended problem.

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