Millions of Texas residents are without power after winter storm pummels area

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Oya who writes with us lives in Houston and she has been dealing with Internet outages, cell reception spottiness and low water pressure. She has not lost power yet but her mom and aunt have. It’s treacherous to drive there and I’m waiting to hear back from her on if her mom and aunt have power back yet or if they were able to make it to her house. (Update: She said her mom is with her now but that the lights are going on and off.) They cannot go out for food because all the stores are closed. Our friends LaUnica Angelina, David and Marigold also live in Texas. They’re all dealing with either full power outages or rolling blackouts and very cold homes after most of that state’s power grid failed due to a rare winter snap hitting the area. The outages are also due to the fact that Texas is on its own power grid and is not connected to the national grid. It’s been privatized and is now mostly run by an agency called ERCOT. Obviously ERCOT was not prepared at all to deal with freezing weather. People are suffering and at least 20 people have died. The Washington Post explains why Texans are without power – because other states can’t share power since their energy agency is cut off from the grid.

Millions of Texans have been plunged into darkness as the state’s electric grid strains to provide power during a historic cold spell.

The bone-chilling winter weather is bringing into stark relief the vulnerabilities of the electricity system as over 4 million customers in Texas remain without power Tuesday morning in a state that prides itself as the energy capital of the world.

A cocktail of high power demand, strained gas supply, iced wind turbines and an independent streak that bleeds into how Texas runs its grid has led to widespread and persistent outages stranding people without power to hunker down in their homes as temperatures remain dangerously below freezing.

Much of the situation behind the blackouts remains unknown. But the outages in Texas, coming just months after rolling blackouts roiled California during another extreme weather event, highlight how the changing climate is poised to test the mettle of the power sector — both in Texas and throughout the rest of the country…

True to its nickname, the Lone Star State runs its own self-contained electric grid. That lets Texas avoid dealing much with the federal government when it comes to its grid. But that gives the state’s grid operator few ways of drawing power from neighboring states during times of extreme energy demand.

“One state over might be doing just fine where Texas could be struggling because there’s no way to move power between those two states,” said Joshua Rhodes, a researcher at the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin.

[From The Washington Post]

To all our friends in Texas, I’m so sorry that you’re dealing with this and that your governor is a complete ass. I’m hoping that your power is restored quickly and that you and all of your loved ones are safe and stay warm. This is outrageous and you should not have to be dealing with this.

Thanks to LaUnica Angelina for many of these tweets and links!

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117 Responses to “Millions of Texas residents are without power after winter storm pummels area”

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  1. Snuffles says:

    Wow! That iced ceiling fan picture is CRAZY!

    Republicans are trying to blame this on wind farms but that’s only 10% of their energy. This is 100% a result of Republican policies.

    Like this dude said:

    “ This is a good time to note that the electrical grid in Texas was deregulated, privatized, and removed from interconnected networks to avoid federal regulation and increase profits to a small number of wealthy individuals.”

    • Merricat says:


    • Mireille says:

      I heard that El Paso is OK. They’re still connected to the National Grid. Today show interviewed the Houston Chief of Police and he just openly criticized the governor and Texas leadership for their incompetence. Governor Abbot went onto Tucker Carlson last night and said he wanted to open an investigation into ERCOT for their failure to restore power and then, without skipping beat, also blamed liberals, the New Green Deal, and windmills.

      • Just A Thought says:

        This all on Gov Abbott. He and the Republicans control every state seat since 1994. Texas should of been apart of the national grind our natural gas lines should be deeper and had protecting coating. Our windmills should of had the update package. That would makes our windmills in Texas work likes the one of Canada and Denmark. Some of my family is having blackouts every 15-20 minutes and some have no power for 33-48 hours. In my part of Texas I’m bless we have food, heat, lights, and water. Our friend were at the store yesterday call to see if we need anything. Came by house and drop off the items. That were so gracious of them.

      • Ann says:

        He’s so full of s**t. You would think someone who was paralyzed in a random accident at a young age would gain some compassion, but nope. This is on ERCOT and the people who run it, and on the Texas government which insisted on being on its own grid because we’re just too darned awesome and independent to join the rest of the country, amiright?

        I’m in Houston. We lost power at around 2 AM Monday morning and got it back yesterday at about 5 PM. We were pretty freezing but I feel lucky to have it back, and to live in a very sound brick house. Our Mayor and County Judge, Lina Hidalgo, have been doing their best to make up for what the state government got wrong. Which is a lot.

        This is beyond messed up. People have died, and more will. It’s inexcusable.

      • UptownGirl says:

        I am in Bryan/College Station. College Station has a larger portion of no power, but we live in Bryan and we have not had any power shortage or rolling black outs. As of early this morning, 5A CST, 400K power restored and 4 million still without power.
        CBS This Morning discussed the Black Caucus of House and Senate members, I grew up in Houston, and Barbara Jordan and Mickey Leland were members, there is only one member left from the original group. I was expressing to my girlfriend about Barbara Jordan last night about how powerful she was. Mickey Leland was an up and coming star in the Democratic Party for 2 decades but he was killed in a plane crash at a young age. When Leland died, my mother cried for a week.
        I think that as long as Repugnants have been in power here over the past three decades, it’s starting to change. Austin, Dallas and Houston have strong Democrat senate and house members and I see that Texas is starting to change blue/purple more each year, except for one area.
        As for Abbott and his Lt. Governor, they are seeing their popularity dwindle. Abbott is an Agent Orange cronie and he has bahaved abhorrently and his time is short. Abbott is a piece of sh@t and is all talk and no action.
        Silicone Valley folks are moving to Texas, we are becoming more blue, which was apparent considering how well Beto did in the last election.
        I am sorry I kind of went on about it, but I see in my area that things are certainly changing and Texas is certainly a purple state now as there have been too many people angry about Repugnants!

    • Mia4s says:

      And just to add to this: Canada uses wind turbines in some areas that get regular cold that Texas could not comprehend. They can easily be modified to run through cold weather.

      The fact that the other 90% of Texas
      power sources failed for the sake of lining the pockets of the rich is a much MUCH a bigger issue….and a disgusting failure.

    • Maida says:

      I lived in Texas for years and can confirm that this is 100 PERCENT on the Republicans who privatized the grid and put greed over the needs of citizens. They took Texas off the national grid to avoid regulation, and this is the result. So of course Abbott is going on an on about how this is all due to “green energy.” He’s in a flop sweat that people are going to figure out that this is ALL on the GOP.

    • liz says:

      That iced ceiling fan is DANGEROUS! Either the water lines in the building have burst, so they are looking at massive flooding as soon as it melts or the roof is leaking and about to collapse. They need to shut down the electricity (the breakers will blow as soon as the water melts) and get the F out of there.

      I texted with my cousin in San Antonio this morning. Their power is going off and on and their pipes have frozen. They are managing with a lot of blankets & layers, but are worried about what will happen when the water melts. Her Mom lives on a ranch outside of Corpus. They have generators and are OK for now, but will run low on fuel fairly soon.

    • Tiffany :) says:

      Privatization of societal necessities never works because businesses don’t know HOW to work for the common good. They only know profit or loss. When the primary goal is to provide a service or fulfill responsibilities, they fail.

      • Emm says:

        Totally agree, was just telling my husband this. Look at healthcare. Anything that’s for profit will come at the expense of peoples well being and what’s right.

    • Antonym says:

      And now it’s been confirmed that one of those despicable Republicans, Cruz, decided to go to Cancun with his family. Meanwhile the rest of us have no water, food supplies are low with stores empty, and many without heat.

  2. Becks1 says:

    I hope all the CBers in texas can stay as warm as possible!

    We have good friends who live in Houston and they were out of power for about two days, but were able to go to her mom’s house, who was also without power but who has a gas fireplace and gas stove, so they were able to to at least cook and have some warmth. But a gas fireplace in some of those bigger houses, with higher ceilings etc, are not going to be warm enough.

    • Doodle says:

      This is us – we have 14 ft ceilings so all the heat hangs out above us. Not that we have much – we still have power but we are running out of propane in our neighborhood so we can’t run our fireplace, and we haven’t had water for days. My husband did a grocery run on the weekend and the shelves were empty because delivery trucks couldn’t get there, so we don’t have a lot to eat or feed the kids. We have been staying home since March 2020 so I can’t even use the excuse “what an adventure!” with my kids anymore – they know that this just sucks.

      • JanetDR says:

        Sorry Doodle, I hope it gets better soon. Keeping your kids warm and fed does take the fun adventure part out of it. I well recall the big ice storm we had in the winter of 91, my kids were 2 and 4 and we had no power, water, phone, etc. The roads were impassible, and nothing was open anyway. I did have a woodstove in the basement (and lots of wood thank goodness!) and I heated frozen waffles and cooked oatmeal porridge on the top. I brought in their car seats and I luckily had an old recliner down there and we slept next to the stove. I read stories by candlelight. I can’t remember how long it was, but in about a week, power was back on in more populated places and we could go to my sister’s and bathe, and were able to buy some groceries and drinking water. The most onerous thing was melting snow to get enough water for toilet flushing, a whole bucket didn’t yield much. It was the first crisis I faced as a newly single parent and since that event I always keep a storm cupboard, with easily heated up food, and anytime there is a hint of electric outage, I fill a bathtub with water for flushing. I’ve gone so far as to keep a rainwater barrel in the basement all winter just in case, but Mr R is possessive of his basement space and promises to get water from the creek if necessary, so I have let go of that. We all deal with weather related issues one way or another, but I hate knowing that people in houses not built to handle the cold are suffering. I’m afraid we are going to be seeing a lot more of this kind of thing in the future.

      • UptownGirl says:

        Doodle, I am so sorry to hear this. I hope that your power is restored quickly and that you all remain safe during the interim. Sending you excellent juju and speedy power!🤗

  3. BearcatLawyer says:

    Just lost power again here in Houston. We had a pipe burst yesterday too. And as if that were not bad enough, I lost my job last Friday.

    ERCOT had ample time to get mothballed power plants back online to generate additional power before the storm hit. They chose not to do so. They also chose to Jack electric rates yesterday because of the atypical demand.

    #%^* ERCOT, 2021, and the useless Texas government. People died, and they need to own it.

    • Liz version 700 says:

      I’m so sorry when it rains it pours. I hope you at least get power back soon and can get the house dried out from the pipe.

    • Swack says:

      I am so sorry for what you are going through.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      …and we just got a boil water notice. I could boil water since I have a gas stovetop, except I had to shut off the water to the house completely after the pipe burst.

      FML. It is so difficult trying to stay warm, clean, fed, and hydrated.

    • UptownGirl says:

      I am so sorry to hear this!! How awful for you to not only experience this tragic news, but now this clusterf#ck of weather too!! I hope that things are better for you in the near future and I am sending excellent juju your way.🤗

    • Soupie says:

      I hope Texans sue the shi- out of these damn bureaucrats. This is unconscionable.

    • Tiffany :) says:

      “They also chose to Jack electric rates yesterday because of the atypical demand. ”

      This is so unconscionable. Kicking people when are down, focusing on their own profit while people are dying and suffering.

    • Wiglet Watcher says:

      That’s awful bearcat. It’ll always get better. Just like it always gets worse, but then better!

      I don’t believe a price will be paid by those that had the chance to help ease this situation. Does it ever? It’s privatization and they know you can’t take your business elsewhere.

  4. whatWHAT? says:

    meanwhile you have Q-Anon Barbie blaming Biden for this.

    like it’s his fault that TX didn’t want to deal with fed regulations and isolated their power grid.

    but hey, surely she and Cruz and the other fascists don’t want none of that damn socialism, right? I’m SURE they want all of us other states to KEEP our money and not have any federal assistance go to them right? secession ain’t sounding to good right now, huh?

    • UptownGirl says:

      This is the normal response from Repugnants, blame it on the Democrats, always!!
      I just want to say that I hope all of you CBers will soon be safe, warm and back to some form of normal sooner rather than later. I hate to see so many of you suffering and our leaders are all blame and no action. Please all be safe and I am thinking of everyone as this truly sucks. Sending love and excellent juju 🤗

  5. Lightpurple says:

    Some family members and friends who moved from the northeast to Texas won’t drive anywhere because, while they know how to drive on icy roads, nobody else does and they fear someone else crashing into them. One friend and her husband are using their car to charge their phones and other devices and as a warming station. They fear that their water pipes will burst.

    Of course, racist, sexist Republicans are blaming this on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes and the Green New Deak because she somehow forced them to privatize the state’s infrastructure decades before she was born.

    • Mireille says:

      The New Green Deal hasn’t even been implemented. WTF?

      • Lightpurple says:

        Governor Abbott decided to divert attention away from his inability to handle a crisis by blaming AOC.

    • Maida says:

      I grew up in Texas and now live in Chicago, and I just want to say that NO ONE can drive safely on roads that are icy (as opposed to snow-covered). It’s impossible to get enough traction on ice. Driving in snow is very, very different.

      Just want to stress this because anyone heading out in Texas and expecting a driving experience similar to that in the Midwest or North is likely to get a nasty shock.

      • BeanieBean says:

        Exactly. No one is exempt from the laws of physics. You may be more comfortable with driving on ice if you’re from the NE, but that doesn’t mean you’re any safer.

    • Ann says:

      It’s true, people here can’t handle driving on ice. Which isn’t their fault really, they just aren’t used to it. Most people are staying home or only driving short distances. I went to the grocery store yesterday since it’s just up the road.

    • Christin says:

      I survived a rollover crash resulting from driving across a patch of black ice. Snow can at least offer some traction, but ice is a nightmare. Hopefully people are staying off the roads until this melts.

      Much sympathy to those facing days without power. Hours seem like days, and days like weeks, without core utilities. It’s especially unnerving and life-threatening for the vulnerable, those who rely on oxygen, etc.

  6. Mina_Esq says:

    This is very scary. I’m so worried for all the people impacted. I can’t imagine having to deal with the bite of winter without heat. Fingers are rightfully being pointed at all those a$$hole politicians that would sell their mother for a dollar rather than take care of their people.

  7. manda says:

    I really hate to knee-jerk react and say that republicans are crazy awful people, but I find myself hard-pressed to find any rational basis for their policies, aside from $$$$. Like, don’t they want the area outside their home to be somewhat nice? They just seem so mean all the time. Did anyone see that post by a mayor from a Texas town called Colorado City and it was all about how he, as the elected mayor, owed his constituents nothing and people needed to figure out the power and water thing without help from the government, basically to fend for themselves and it was just shocking in its callousness. I just don’t get it

    I can’t imagine seeing my breath in my own home. I would be petrified of the pipes bursting. I can’t believe the state set themselves up to fail in this way

    • Mireille says:

      The mayor resigned and I think he complained that his wife got fired from her job because she defended him. What he said was beyond cruel and insensitive considering people are suffering.

      • manda says:

        and you know, he probably claims to be a “christian” too

      • Indywom says:

        And I bet his wife will file for unemployment benefits as soon as she can. You know the government benefits. The Republicans always criticize democratic run states. I lived in Illinois for five years and had two blizzards and numerous days with below zero temperatures and the only time I lost power was when a car hit a transformer. Now don’t get me wrong, Illinois is corrupt as hell but they do know how to do some things right. Texas is a prime example of what happens when people deny the truth. Any scientist could have told them that this was a possibility.

    • Mabs A'Mabbin says:

      Lmao. We’ve been seeing our breath for so long now haha. All we can do is laugh at this point.

      • manda says:

        I’m sure that is the healthy way to react! Getting upset and worrying doesn’t help, but that would be my response, I’m sure

    • Ann says:

      I saw that. What a jerk. It’s pretty rich to say “you are owed nothing” to people when they PAY for electricity! It’s not like it’s free or even covered by tax dollars. He deserved to lose the job. At least in Houston we have public officials who care and are working hard to make things better, as much as they can.

  8. Faithmobile says:

    I don’t understand that fan picture. Did water drip from the ceiling? Like our orange sky last year in SF this looks apocalyptic.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      It is an apartment so a pipe in the ceiling above likely burst, causing the icicles on the fan.

    • Ann says:

      It just happened to us. We have an outdoor fan in a covered patio area, and since it was more exposed to the cold and probably not well insulated enough a pipe burst and water started pouring through the lights and the fan. So, no water now and good luck getting a plumber, but at least we got power back.

  9. Louise177 says:

    Lived most of my life in the NE but lived in TX and GA for 8 years when I was younger. It always shocks me how unprepared the South is for cold weather. I know it happens once in a blue moon but the state practically shuts down when there’s frost. Not to mention all of the deaths.

    • Becks1 says:

      I think its worth pointing out though that this kind of cold weather would cripple many states – I’m in Maryland and if we had some of those low temps, like 6 degrees, schools would close because they wouldnt want kids waiting at the bus stops, and schools do close around here for more than 3-4 inches of snow. And ice is a whole different ball game. So this isnt just about “frost.”

      • manda says:

        omg yes! remember how bad it was in 2009 or was it 2007? One of the snowpacolypses or snowmageddons caused a lot of trouble in MD. Unless a place consistently gets snow, they just aren’t ready for it

      • Emm says:

        I’m in IN right outside of Chicago and we have been in single digits or below 0 for the last week at least, snow for days, in fact we haven’t had a winter as fas as snow and temps go like this in years. The snow on our back deck is halfway to 3/4 up the railings, it’s wild. There was a brief warm up that gave us a ton of ice and then snow fell right on top of it, everyone has huge icicles from it too. But except for school moving to virtual yesterday because it snowed about 8-10 inches the night before and expecting the busses to be able to get out before the plows was not gonna happen, nothing has really shut down. The roads are all salted and have been plowed and businesses are open as usual. My kids have recess if it’s over 10 degrees unless the playground is too icy. My friend that lives closer to the Ohio state border said her kids school doesn’t cancel recess unless it’s below 0. As far as preparedness I feel very lucky to live in an area that was prepared for this storm and the amount of snow it dumped on us and the frigid temps even though we haven’t seen this in years.

        I’m keeping all TX in my thoughts though and really hope that changes are made and people realize that the people they have elected do not in fact have their best interests at heart even if they are “pro life”. It’s awful to see this happening and read these stories.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      We have not had temperatures this low in parts of Texas for about 70 years. However, it is unforgivable that ERCOT did next to nothing to protect the power grid for weather like this. The northern half of Texas routinely gets wintry weather, including snow and ice. But they let people suffer anyway.

    • MissMarierose says:

      It’s important to note that this isn’t just a Southern problem. Most areas in this vast country are not prepared for the atypical weather that comes with climate change. The north and midwest is often unprepared for heat waves because they don’t have the air conditioning in their homes that people do in the south.

      • Chris says:

        I didn’t take it as a criticism of the people in the South, but of how woefully unprepared states are for extreme weather they wouldn’t normally get, but are now happening as a result of climate change. The southern infrastructure isn’t built for extreme cold just like the far north isn’t built for extreme heat. We’re all in a lot of trouble.

  10. HoofRat says:

    This is awful. We were without heat in our unit for over a week last winter during a cold snap and it was incredibly stressful, even though we were very fortunate to still have access to hot water and power. I can’t imagine how stressful and dangerous this is for those Texans who are suffering as a result of someone else’s toxic ideology and greed. As someone who lives in Texas North, I completely understand this political dynamic and how much damage it causes.

  11. Mireille says:

    Just contacted a friend who lives near Dallas to see if there’s anything I can do for her, send her (I’m in New York). She’s got no power and spent the night huddling in a ton of blankets in her home. I hope she’s OK. Hope that all Texans find some relief from this — stay safe, warm, and healthy.

  12. Size Does Matter says:

    Okay so here I am reporting live from North Texas. I’m one of the lucky ones. Power has been mostly out since middle of the night Sunday. One broken pipe and I’m pretty sure my refrigerator has died. First world problem but the pool equipment and plumbing is destroyed and we have been hacking up the ice in top of the pool with shovels and scooping/throwing it out to keep the pool itself from cracking.

    12 months of distance learning in a pandemic with four kids. Now without heat or power. But hey, we don’t have to read Trump tweets anymore so there’s that.

  13. Beech says:

    I live in New Mexico, TXs’ neighbor to the west and less than an hour’s drive to TX. I had no idea their grid was unregulated, privatized etc. It’s rumored Beto O’ Rourke will make a run for TX governor, fine and dandy but the state legislature needs to be cleaned out of all oil and gas interests. Make that all of the GOP.

    It’s the wind turbines y’all!

    • Alarmjaguar says:

      I lived in NM until recently and also had no idea that was the case.

    • Ann says:

      I saw Beto on the news last night and have been looking at his tweets. It definitely seems like he is setting up for a run for Governor. I’ll be working for him.

  14. Anna says:

    This is horrific. My heart goes out to all those suffering in this terrible situation. I remember in Chicago in 2014 at the end of January the heat going out in my building when it was -40 degrees F. For ten days. I almost died. There was a layer of ice 2 inches thick inside on my windows. All the blankets and coats and socks could not keep me warm. I was so sick, I just started praying to let go. I had no money even to have medicine delivered. I’ve been through some harrowing situations in life, grew up without running water, but that, it really is seared into my memory and I wouldn’t wish that kind of pain on anyone. And the landlords and mayor and governor, all of these entities who are supposed to serve the people–where are they?

  15. kim says:

    I don’t feel bad for the people who vote for dumb a$$ people who try to privatize everything…I feel bad for the people who see that for what it is, and vote against it….

    • Steph says:

      Most of the power outages are in Houston and Austin, two liberal cities filled with people who definitely didn’t vote for this. Our power has been out since 6:45pm on Sunday and we’re lucky to still have water. Many of my friends don’t. Only 42% of Houston has power right now, and many just got it back after having more than a day-long outage. Texas neglected to winterize it’s grid to be able to supply cheap electricity, presumably for commercial entities here. But if you read the comments to any article about this, there’s some fool blaming it all on the windmills.

    • Mel says:

      You do know that Biden got more votes from “dumb a$$” Texans than from 47 other states right? About 47% of voters voted Democrat. Do you feel bad for them?

  16. Lindy says:

    My husband and I are in Austin with our two boys (11 and 2) and we lost power last Thursday at 1pm when iced trees took out much of the grid in northwest Austin, which is very hilly with lots of trees.

    It was out for 27hrs, restored briefly on and off for no more than 2hrs consecutively over the next 24hrs, and has been out since Monday at 2am when the energy company started doing “rolling blackouts” that they couldn’t sustain.

    So we’ve had 8 total hours of power, nonconsecutively, since last Thursday at 1pm.

    We had friends whose power came back on Sunday night, so we gratefully took them up on their offer of hospitality. We have heat here but no water because most of Austin has frozen and burst pipes. The temperatures have been dangerously low. My husband slowly drove the 3 miles over surface roads back to our house yesterday before the sleet started again last night to pick up more food and diapers and clothes. Our house was 24F when he was there yesterday, inside the house.

    We are incredibly lucky to have a place to stay with people who also take Covid seriously. Though power here has been flickering on and off since last night so we may lose it here.

    This is the direct result of 40 years of Republicans controlling Texas state government. Refusing to participate in later power sharing grids because they want to avoid federal mandates for infrastructure updates. 40 years of underfunding public works. Welcome to the libertarian dystopian hellscape that is Texas. Gonna go charge my phone while I have power.

    People are suffering and dying here. It’s a nightmare. I hope Oya’s family is warm and safe.

    • Ann says:

      Glad you are safe. I saw Beto O’Rourke on the news last night, he really let Abbot have it. I hope he runs for Governor and wins. That would do something to putting us back on the right track. We don’t have young kids in the house. Our daughter is living in New York and as it happens our son went up last Friday for a Valentines Day weekend with his girlfriend. Now all the flights are cancelled and he’s stuck up there until Saturday, but I’m glad he is there and not here.

      I am so angry and it’s clear you are too. We have a right to be.

  17. Willow says:

    Oh my gosh! This is criminal! We have lived all over, including both Texas and Minnesota. The winter temps are so completely different that you can’t even find long sleeve shirts in Texas stores. People can’t get proper supplies to protect them from this weather. I also noticed that people, government, institutions, in areas that don’t usually get dangerous winter weather don’t have the experience to deal with these situations. So having power is even more essential in Texas and other states that don’t get this cold. I know Texans are independent but to save lives those politicians better buck up and ask for help from the Northerners.

  18. Villanelle says:

    We just lost power last night and had to evacuate. I live in a rural neighborhood with a lot of elderly people and many don’t have family nearby. Two were found on the floor of their home yesterday after being without power for 24 hours when the temp had gone down to -4. We don’t have any infrastructure to handle this so a few people with trucks have been doing rounds to check on everyone and help relocate them.

  19. vertes says:

    I wish Cruz were stuck in TX instead of DC & froze his ass. Maybe when he gets home, he’ll find that all his pipes have frozen & his house is wrecked.

    • Ann says:

      His wife and daughters are here. They are probably fine but the power outages are all over, so it’s likely they lost power at least for a while. I don’t know how she stays with that bastard. She’s a successful woman, she doesn’t need him. His kids go to a pretty liberal, very prestigious private school and I would bet a lot of the parents don’t care for their father. I feel for them.

    • Oya says:

      Ted is own his way to Cancun, Mexico with his family. Was caught boarding a plane

  20. MrsDC says:

    Texan here and in Deep South Texas it’s getting bad. Family and Coworkers without power for 30+ hours. No water and those who do have water need to boil it without electricity. There are long lines at all the gas stations and the HEB’s that are open pretty much ran out of meat & dairy. We Texans prepare for no electricity in the heat, sadly we aren’t prepared for the cold. Prayers for my community and the rest of Texas struggling.

  21. Lunasf17 says:

    My husbands family around Waco and Dallas have been without power for days. It’s really sad and dangerous. It’s annoying that SOME Texans (cough my in laws) always talks about how Texas can be it’s an own country and doesn’t need the rest of the US to survive. How is that working out for ya? It’s almost like privatizing public services doesn’t work out like they think and it’s better to help each other out.

  22. salmonpuff says:

    We are in Oregon and just got power back after two days. It was really stressful, and our temps were much warmer. I wasn’t worried that we could freeze to death in the middle of the night!

    That said, it is so rough to live without heat and power. We’re good campers, but we struggled to function in the constant cold, and I had multiple work deadlines this week, so I needed to keep my devices charged — something that is so much harder during this pandemic, as I couldn’t just pop to the nearest coffee shop with power.

    I feel for Texans and hope they can stay safe and sane until the weather warms.

    • Chris says:

      In Virginia and our power, heat, and running water were off for 48 hours after that ice storm. We don’t have a fireplace either so it was cold in our house (thank god not the subzero situation Texas is dealing with). Like you mentioned it’s kind of difficult to focus on or do anything when you’re perpetually cold. I don’t know how you got any work done, that’s impressive.

  23. Sheamus says:

    I live in north Texas and so far I’ve been lucky and have only had a few hours without power. My brother went 22 hours without power, then it came back up for an hour and then went out again for another 8 hours. His house was 44 degrees and all of his fish in his aquarium died. He then got ~4 hours of power, followed by another 12 hours (and counting) of no power. Unfortunately he has nowhere to go – too far to drive to relatives, none of his friends have power, and hotels are completely booked up.

  24. Esmom says:

    Holy hell, reading everyone’s stories here is horrifying and heartbreaking. And it’s infuriating to see the governor immediately deflect to blaming Democrats.

    My best to all CBers in TX. So sorry you all are paying the price for negligence that seems criminal.

    • Alarmjaguar says:

      Right, I’m seething about that response! Republicans have nothing to offer people but anger and blame. I am so sorry for the people who are suffering right now in TX, many, many of whom did not vote for their state leaders, but also those who have been led astray by them.

      • Ann says:

        Abbot won by a pretty comfortable margin but Cruz came pretty close to being defeated by O’Rourke, who happened to be a compelling and tireless candidate. He seems to be gearing up to run for Governor, and I will say the ONLY good thing about this whole disaster is that it might hurt Abbot and get a Democrat in the job who can do some actual good for people.

  25. Ashley says:

    In Central Texas right now, we’ve been without power since Monday morning. Our city is also currently on a boil water ban due to several water main breaks. Our home is around 50 degrees inside. We’ve been maintaining with our wood burning fireplace, lots of blankets and snuggles from the dogs! We’re told there would be rolling blackouts but certain areas have never lost power(shopping centers, Walmart, etc) while others like ours have been without most of the week. We are handling it but it has been a struggle. Current road conditions are also preventing us from venturing out much.

  26. Amelie says:

    Holy s***! That ceiling fan picture is crazy. I knew it had snowed in the South, my friend who lives in Tennessee (originally from VA so she’s used to snow) told me the snow pretty much paralyzed Memphis where she is. I’ve not been paying attention because we’ve had snow on the ground in CT/NY (I’m right on the border in CT) where I am for weeks (though it is now melting pretty fast as but we might get more in the next few days, who knows). I hope the power situation gets resolved soon and that everyone affected gets power and heat back soon! This is so awful.

    I know all about living without power or heat, so I fully understand the struggle. When Hurricane Sandy hit NY in 2012 (I was living right across the state border in Westchester County, NY at the time), we were without power for nearly TWO WEEKS. ConEd, the electric company that serves the area, was completely swamped so we had extra workers coming in from Quebec in Canada working on our street repairing all the downed power lines. A few days after Hurricane Sandy hit (it was end of October), we had a freak early snowfall in early November and the temperatures plunged and omg it sucked. It sucked SO MUCH being without power AND heat. I feel like a lot of people don’t realize this, but we were hit with a hurricane AND a snowstorm within the span of a few days. We were lucky we had family living nearby who got power back relatively fast. We ended up living there for about a week waiting for our street to get power back. I swear to God, our neighborhood was the last street to get power back in our town. All our neighbors had their generators running, so it was also loud. We also had to deal with all the downed trees and the coastal flooding because my hometown where I was living was along the Long Island Sound. It was a huge mess and I’m so sorry Texans are experiencing this in the middle of winter. It was bad enough when I experienced it during the fall.

    • Deering24 says:

      Ugh. I remember Sandy all too well (I live in NJ). We were boiling water on the stove for a good two weeks and burned through all our’ candles and batteries. And we had to go the next town over to vote for Obama to get a second term because our city had no power for anything.

  27. Darla says:

    I’m so sorry. I hope you all come out of this well. What a disaster.

  28. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I’m right here with with Oya. Sending love. Our lights have been flickering since Sunday, but we’ve been lucky. Our heater is a different story. There’s really no heat so we’ve been huddling under layers of clothing and blankets for days lol. My son’s pipes burst in Katy as has many of his neighbors’ so they’ve been up for days trying to clean and repair. Someone’s upstairs pipes burst and water became a gushing waterfall drowning the house. Insane. We’ve had it colder here than my son at the Air Force Base in Maryland!

    The online comments here (local papers) have been driving me mental. “How’s that global warming working for ya?” I admit. I’ve not been successful at biting my tongue.

    • Alarmjaguar says:

      Those comments infuriates me! Weather is not climate – and climate change is absolutely throwing the Arctic cold patterns out of whack. This is not normal. ARGH! (Anger definitely not directed at you, Mabs, just solidarity anger and frustration).

  29. Veronica S. says:

    The iced ceiling fan is actually a burst pipe – it was posted on Reddit yesterday by people from the building it happened at as they were evacuating. I imagine a lot of people are going to see structural damage to that extent.

    I’m betting their electric grid would’ve taken a hit either way just because this storm is unprecedented, but this does emphasize how dangerous it is to completely deregulate and isolate a basic utility from a national grid. Texas’s grid apparently is one of the most productive in the nation and had tremendous output thanks to its wind/gas setup, but nothing can be done if they’re facing a crisis that exceeds what it can do overall based on the expectations it was built for with no ability to offset it by importing in from other states.

  30. Chris says:

    I’m in Virginia and we lost power for 48 hours due to the ice storm that came through. We have well water so that meant no running water for that time either. My husband figured out to collect water from the ice melt coming through the down spouts so that we could flush our toilets. Fortunately, nearby stores had power, the linemen were working 24/7 to get the lights back on and it was a degree above freezing so it was very cold, but not the subzero temperatures Texas is experiencing. We also have down jackets and comforters because we’re from the North so we were more prepared, but we couldn’t even go sit inside a restaurant because of the pandemic. We unfortunately don’t have a fireplace. Republican policy (including inaction on climate change) is effing up our country so badly. We’re anticipating ANOTHER devastating ice storm tonight. I nearly cried when I found out because I don’t want to be that cold for that long again. Waking up freezing is… depressing.

    I’m feeling such worry and sympathy for Texas right now. The way they are suffering right now is brutal and a catastrophic failure.

  31. JP says:

    My family all live in south Texas- no power since Sunday! Luckily they all have generators because they were slammed by Harvey a few years ago. Aside from the immediate concern of freezing, not having food, etc- water is starting to run low because of all the broken and frozen pipes. We know people who work at a dialysis center and the water pressure is too low to run the machines.

  32. Ohpioneer says:

    My daughter & family in the Austin area is on day 3 of no power. Fortunately they have a wood burning fireplace for some heat.

  33. Liz version 700 says:

    I can’t believe that the Governor of Texas is going on Fox to blame AIC for their power failure instead of trying to help the people suffering in his state?!? That would be so frustrating g if I was sitting in a 30 degree house

  34. LittlePenguin says:

    My heart goes out to everyone experiencing this storm and the aftershocks. (no water, heat, power, food insecurity) The complete disaster that it is blows me away.

  35. Marigold says:

    It has been rough. Luckily we have had rolling power outages, but today the water was shut off. I’m lucky because I have a gas fireplace and a gas stove. So we are able to keep our living room warm and able to cook. My daughter, her boyfriend and their two dogs are bunking with us.

    We made a big pallet on the living room floor so everyone has a place. The dogs are the best. My dog is tiny, then a middle sized dog and finally one giant old gentleman lab.

    We are keeping a good attitude, but there is no end in sight at least for awhile. It’s just one more thing in a year if things. I’ll admit that I’m just tired.

  36. Bibi says:

    2 or 3 years ago we had no power here for 4 days in April and it was hell (Canada). Thank god we had a gas fireplace. The kids were miserable without wifi lol. I feel for those people, it’s even harder when you don’t know the cold. Today outside we’re feeling -17C which is 1F, i wouldnt want to be without power now. Hope it gets restablished fast and hope their top people learn form this – we all need a second option for emergencies, that shouldnt be negotiable and it certainly shouldnt be about money

  37. Annalise says:

    I have no idea if Ted Cruz had anything to do with Texas’s power becoming privatized (I know the governor probably has more to do w/ those kinds of decisions) but hopefully this will at least make him and all the other Texas QOP currently in charge, look like sh*t.

  38. Mel says:

    I am in Austin, luckily I have not lost power but they turned off the water supply today. I have friends who have been without power for 35 hours or longer and you can’t drive anywhere because theres snow or black ice on the roads. It’s crazy right now. Thankfully I was aware of the weather coming so I was a little prepared but not everyone was so lucky.

  39. Aimee says:

    My sister lives in Houston and she said her neighbors have broken parts of their fences to use as firewood!!!

  40. Tiffany :) says:

    A family member works at a nursing home in Houston, and they had to move 60 patients to another facility because they lost power and part of the roof collapsed. There’s so many tragic situations happening to so many people in Texas. My heart goes out to them.

  41. Kate says:

    I live in Houston and work in the energy sector. The response from Abbot and ERCOT is piss poor. From what I can infer, there was no planning and no preparation. Decisions were made to best optimize the ramp-up timing and profitability of the utilities – not for the benefit of the residents.

    I’m sure whatever “investigation” they do will yield no meaningful results and we will carry on as usual.

  42. Nicole says:

    It is a shit-show here. I went grocery shopping Thursday anticipating being stuck in the house and we have a gas powered oven. I did not anticipate rolling power outages. I’ve been lucky because we live near the utility hub for the city, so our outages have been far and few between. My parents living 20 miles away have had it far worse. They’re trying to make it with the fireplace and gas appliances. On Monday, there house got down to 52 overnight. I feel for those that have neither.

  43. Jack says:

    I live in Katy, Tx and lost power around 2 am Monday. It just came back at 8:00 am Wednesday. We have a gas fireplace, so have been camped out in front of that trying to keep warm. We lost water last night, but that has come back with a boil water notice. There is another storm coming in on Thursday night, so it’s still going to be bad. My daughter and I are ok and are staying warm with our dogs, but I’m scared to death of pipes bursting. I’ve been out of work since last June and can’t afford a burst pipe. 2021 isn’t shaping up any better than 2020…

    • Saucy&Sassy says:

      Jack, if you already know this, then just disregard. You need to turn on faucets to a bare steady stream. Don’t be surprised if it turns into a drip. As long as water is running through the pipes, they won’t freeze. I don’t know how expensive your water is, but it will be a lot cheaper than burst pipes. Just keep an eye on them. If you think the drip is too slow, turn it up just a very little bit.

      I lived in Alaska for a couple of years, and we always did this when the snow and ice storms hit. I hope you, your daughter and all the others in Texas can stay safe. Lots of positive thoughts and prayers heading your way.

  44. Zaya says:

    My parents are in Dallas, and while they’ve had rolling blackouts, they’re one of the luckier ones where it’s not too bad.

    I feel for people in Texas. That ceiling fan is crazy. Also saw a TikTok video where someone’s daughter’s fish tank froze.

    Just saw that idiot Rick perry who presided over the power grid deregulation in ‘02 said Texans are willing to suffer blackouts and go days without power as long as it’ll keep the feds out. Unbelievable.

  45. Christine says:

    The GOP is literally tilting at windmills while the citizens of Texas freeze to death.

  46. Mia says:

    Glad Oya is hanging in there! 💚

  47. Linda says:

    As far as power outages, I went without power for a week in 2009 after an ice storm. It was bad and scary. You don’t understand what dark is until you don’t have any ambient light.
    Thankfully we had water but there was a point when we almost lost it because the backup generator almost failed. It’s very sad and scary.

  48. The Recluse says:

    My sister and her family live in Humble, TX. They work in Houston and fortunately their new house came with a fire place, so there’s that, but they have no power last I heard from her. She moved there from California a little over a year ago, so in a sense, I suspect she’s somewhat prepared for emergencies, but not an Alaskan deep freeze kind in a state that has been so negligent in favor of profits.

  49. Katherine says:

    I live in Galveston, TX, and its like the apocalypse here. There is no water or power on the majority of the island, and the houses are any where from 20 – 30 degrees. We hope that the Red Cross of FEMA will come soon to provide water and heating material. I have gone through hurricanes, and this feels very similar except there is no flooding and it is freezing. Its just truly horrible, and I have a feeling we’re going to have several more days of this. I hope we join the country’s other electric regions, so we can avoid this in the future.

  50. EllenOlenska says:

    Hey folks! Ted Cruz wants you all to come stay at his house to warm up! Wear your MAGA hat for entrance! 🤗

  51. MsGnomer says:

    That is terrible. Temps have been below zero here for days with rolling black outs and a foot of snow. Very close to Tulsa, OK. Youtube search terra cotta pots for emergency heat, and for light, put shortening like Crisco in a glass jar, add bday candle into shortening for wick. Will burn slowly. If you havent already, turn on all your drains very slow running and leave cabinet doors open for warm air to reach pipes. Supposed to help so they dont burst.

    Stupid to write it here, but maybe this will help someone. I wish i could help. Hang on!

  52. LaUnicaAngelina says:

    Thank you, CB, and all of you wonderful, compassionate people. *hugs*

    It’s been an emotionally exhausting experience. I just took my first shower since Sunday. We found a fishing lodge in the middle of no where today with electricity and running water. We feel so thankful to finally have a safe space. Our town and the city nearby are mostly uninhabitable now.

    This is absolutely the Texas government’s fault and they’re trying to pass the buck in the most unreasonable ways.

  53. AuntieG says:

    I’m in east Texas and we are in our 3rd day of no power! We would love to even have rolling blackouts at this point. It is like living in a end of the world or scary movie but the big bad villains are your own elected officials and the utilities you pay for as they keep asking you to be patient as you slowly freeze in your home wearing so many layers of clothes covered in blankets. We ran out of firewood yesterday and a kind neighbor shared enough for another night. So my parents and I had to have a tough conversation about our options for how to survive until the weekend with no heat and limited food because the roads are horrendous. (Oh and we now have to boil water or drink bottled water cuz that’s easy to do.)
    There are limited shelters in our area (podunk-country) and basically nonexistent if you have pets. I was not going to leave my cat behind to die. Luckily we found a church that was opening as a shelter nearby and they changed the rules to let us bring my cat when we explained we had no where else to go and no way to stay warm. I have cried more the last 3 days than I have in a long time. I legit sobbed when we walked into the warm shelter and were given hot food and a private room since we had a pet. They didn’t want him to be forced to stay in his carrier all the time. I was already voting for anyone except Abbott and his ridiculous Lt. Gov. but now I’m actively lobbying against these jerks.

  54. CountryBumpkin says:

    ERGOt is a private company that is under the Texas Public Utility Commission umbrella funded by the Texas State Legislative. Now here is the thing Governor Abbott doesn’t want you to know everyone on the Public Utility Commission are appointed by the Governor. Abbott only has himself to be angry with

    I live in the country near Prairie View T. We live 30 miles from a grocery store. Let’s just say I hate going to the store so I keep a lot of food on hand but need some non- perishables. Needed food that didn’t require refrigeration We have a well. We spent Saturday & Sunday covering landscaping, draining sprinkler system, put a heater in the pump house so pipes wouldn’t freeze, we left the water dripping and at 2:00 am on Sunday water quit dripping. We found 2 more heaters to put out there, got the water dripping again, we lost power so had to drag the generator to pump house to keep the heaters running. We finally got power back on Tuesday just as we ran out of gas for the generator. We are good but I have turned and unplugged everything that is not needed so we don’t strain the grid. I feel guilty that so many people don’t have power and water. This reminds of the destruction of property like Hurricane Harvey. What is really sad there are people still waiting on repairs for Harvey damage that now have damage from Snowmaggeddon(sp)

    My 92 yr old Dad & Brother live west of Fort Worth in the country. They lost power on Sunday/Monday and their house is total electric and on a well. The inside of the house was 45 for most of the time. Luckily my brother was able to keep the fire going, used his camping stove to boil water for tea, coffee, & heat up some food, they melted snow to flush the toilets, they did run out of bottled water. My brother went in to town to get some water and the stores were closed. Their electricity came on last night around 10:00 PM but went out again at 5:00 am and came back on 8:30 am.

    I hope everyone in Tx get power and water soon. The store shelves are bare and hopefully are being stocked tonight

  55. Watson says:

    Sending you guys support. Truly worried for you guys.