Wednesday, 24 February, 2021


Biden considers Texas visit as it recovers from storm and blackouts

A famly melts snow on their stovetop to get water in Austin Texas Feb. 17 2021 A famly melts snow on their stovetop to get water in Austin Texas Feb. 17 2021
Kristine Garrett | 20 February, 2021, 15:29

Mr. Abbott said he would push for state funding to winterize the state electricity grid, which normally has more to fear from extreme heat in summer than extreme cold.

About 70,000 power outages persisted after an ice storm in eastern Kentucky, while almost 67,000 were without electricity in West Virginia.

A historic winter storm that knocked out power and froze pipes across Texas has left many families scrambling for safe drinking water. "Blame will surely be assessed". ERCOT president and CEO Bill Magness admitted during a press briefing Thursday that the Texas power grid was just "seconds or minutes" away from a complete and catastrophic failure, as power demand increased and generators fell offline on Sunday night amid the snowstorm. She graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott lambasted ERCOT for its handling of this week's storm and urged lawmakers to pass legislation to ensure the grid would be better prepared in the future. A man died at an Abilene health care facility when a lack of water pressure made medical treatment impossible. Memphis International Airport cancelled all incoming and outgoing passenger flights Friday due to water pressure issues. Austin Water is working with the City's Emergency Operations Center to address the needs of critical customers, including hospitals and power plants.

Compounding the problem was the fact that much of Texas was still experiencing cold weather and snowstorms Thursday, part of a havoc-inducing bout of winter weather that also prompted winter storm warnings in parts of New York, New Jersey and CT through Friday night.

Record-setting cold weather has cut water and energy supplies to hospitals across a wide swath of Texas.

The winter storm spawned at least four tornadoes, according to Atlanta-based weather.com, including one in North Carolina on Monday that killed at least three people and injured 10. Crews pumped water to refill city tanks but faced a shortage of chemicals for treatment because icy roads made it hard for distributors to deliver them, Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said.

The White House has been in touch with mayors in Texas cities, including Houston and Austin, and officials in Dallas and other counties, to make sure they were connected to FEMA and have access to federal government resources, an administration official said separately.

Water service was restored Friday to two Houston Methodist community hospitals, but officials still were bringing in drinking water and some elective surgeries were cancelled, spokeswoman Gale Smith said.

Moody's said, "We expect insured losses for US P&C insurers to total in the billions of dollars, with claims from homeowners, commercial property, and auto lines of business".

Before the wintry weather moved from Texas, the city of Del Rio along the U.S. -Mexico border, got almost 10 inches (25.4 cm) of snow on Thursday, surpassing the city's one-day record for snowfall.

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