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Winter Storm 2021

“Please help us, please”: More than 100 older and disabled Texans were stranded without power in Austin high-rise

Firefighters helped staff evacuate residents who wanted to go to shelters after more than two days of frigid temperatures and dwindling food supplies.

Residents at the Rebekah Baines Johnson Center were evacuated in Austin after the building lost power. Feb. 17, 2021.

Winter Storm 2021

As Texas faced record-low temperatures in February 2021 and snow and ice made roads impassable, the state’s electric grid operator lost control of the power supply, leaving millions without access to electricity. As the blackouts extended from hours to days, top state lawmakers called for investigations into the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, and Texans demanded accountability for the disaster. The Texas Tribune covered the impact of the storm in real time and continues to bring accountability coverage as officials address the issues exposed by the storm. 

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February Winter Storm 2021

  • When will my water come back? How can I get water in the meantime?

  • Will I get a large energy bill?

  • How can I get updates?

  • I was without power for more than a day. Why are people calling these rolling outages?

  • Wait, we have our own power grid? Why?

  • I read online that wind turbines are the reason we lost power. Is that true?

  • How can I stay warm? How can I help others?

Property monitor Gabby Amaya speaks with a resident at the Rebekah Baines Johnson Center on Feb. 17, 2021.
Margie Ray, 75, was evacuated from the Rebekah Baines Johnson Center in Austin after the building lost power. Feb. 17, 2021.

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