UPDATED 1:37 AM PT – Wednesday, February 17, 2021
At least 26 people have been reported dead as a result of a series of winter storms across the country.
Millions are still without power in Texas and schools remain closed. Additionally, COVID-19 vaccine shipments and distribution has been put on hold amid frigid temperatures as well as massive amounts of snow.
As severe winter weather impacts our state, Texans should:
– Stay off the roads
– Conserve energy
– Keep generators & grills outside
– Avoid heating homes with ovens or stovetops
— Gov. Greg Abbott (@GovAbbott) February 13, 2021
In an interview Tuesday night, Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said frozen wind turbines contributed to the widespread power outages and called for an investigation into the state’s energy company known as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT).
Abbott previously noted that natural gas and coal generators were also affected by the blizzard. Local leaders also blasted ERCOT for the power grid failure.
“We’ve been hit hard by nature this week, but we can’t deny that some of this is a manmade disaster as well,” stated Lina Hidalgo, (D) Harris County Judge. “And the 5 million residents of this county, and really this region and the state, will deserve answers from ERCOT and the state once this is over.”
has declared an EEA 3. Energy conservation is critical. Rotating outages are underway to reduce demand on the electric system. We urge Texans to put safety first during this time. Traffic lights and other infrastructure may be temporarily without power. 01:25:40 150221
— ERCOT (@ERCOT_ISO) February 15, 2021
More dangerous weather is expected Wednesday with winter storm advisories issued from Oklahoma to Ohio and Georgia. Meanwhile, major airports are closed and thousands of flights have been canceled across the country.
The White House said it’s in touch with the governors of states impacted by the storms.