Insights > Entergy Texas Winter Storm Update – 2/16/21 @ 10 a.m.

Entergy Texas Winter Storm Update – 2/16/21 @ 10 a.m.

02/16/2021

February 16, 2021                      Tuesday, 10:00 AM

Entergy Texas has started additional power outages for its customers across the Eastern portion of its Texas service territory, which includes Jefferson, Orange, Hardin, and Liberty counties. The company is taking this action as directed by our reliability coordinator, the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), as a last resort and in order to prevent a more extensive, prolonged power outage that could severely affect the reliability of the power grid. Additionally, Entergy continues to follow a directive by MISO to reduce load in the Western region of its service territory.

Entergy will work to limit the duration and frequency of each outage, but due to significant demand on the system and generation outages, our options may be limited.

MISO is directing actions to be taken to restore the system to normal operations as quickly as possible and will direct Entergy to stop these outages as soon as the power shortfall no longer threatens the integrity of the electrical power system.

Extreme cold temperatures are expected to last for much of the week and we ask all customers to help conserve electricity.

Key Messages:

  • Entergy has been directed by MISO to start outages in the Eastern portion of its territory and continue reducing load in the Western portion of its territory to protect the reliability of the power grid.
  • These outages may last several hours and it is not necessary to report your outage during this time. If you have a life-threatening emergency please call 1-8009OUTAGE, that's 1-800-968-8243.
  • Due to volume of periodic outages, we’re experiencing delays in restoration status on the outage map.
  • We continue our work to return power plants online but are facing difficulties due to the extreme cold. 
  • We will continue these outages until we are able to return our generation to service and MISO cancels its request for curtailment. 
  • Because of the extreme cold temperatures, resuming to full operation is a slower than usual process.
  • We are working to minimize outage times as much as possible. We apologize for the inconvenience this outage has caused and appreciate your understanding.
  • Energy conservation is key. We are asking that all customers reduce energy usage, which will help us in the restoration effort.

West Region

We continue to make progress on returning generation to our system to help meet demand.  We were able to return one unit yesterday, and hope to add more generation today.  We have taken additional measures to protect against the extreme cold temperatures and additional winter weather tonight may slow our efforts. 

In the west region, there are currently 94,072 without power. Approximately 48,877 are due to required load reductions. We also have 45,195 customers we are working to restore but our efforts are slowed due to difficulties around restoration in the extreme cold. We have begun implementing a process to rotate customers, and as conditions improve, the duration and frequency of outages should decrease.  

Our plan today is to work on returning available generation to service, while also preparing for additional winter weather tonight, and routinely execute any required periodic outages. 

East Region

Early this morning, MISO, our grid operator, directed us to reduce load in the eastern region of our footprint.  We currently have begun these outages and are working to identify additional circuits that allow us to rotate the outages. However, given the high demand in the area, and circuits with critical customers (such as hospitals) our options are limited to rotate a large number of customers. 

These outages are the result of high demand on the system and generation that has been forced offline due to extreme weather.  We are working today to return generation to service, which should help efforts to minimize the duration and frequency of outages. 

As of 6 am, there are currently 70,967 customers without power in the East (including Liberty, Jefferson, Orange and Hardin counties), approximately 63,000 are due to outages resulting from load reductions. 

Safety is our number one priority.  If you lose power:

  • Stay away from downed power lines and assume they are energized. Report them to 1-800-9OUTAGE.
  • If you have a portable generator, use it safely. DO NOT run it in an enclosed space. If connecting to the whole house, do so only if the connection has been installed by a licensed electrician to prevent back feed on to the distribution system.
  • Do not open your refrigerator or freezer door. Food will stay cold much longer this way. If outside temperature is below freezing, consider placing food in an ice chest outside.
  • Please stay clear of linemen as they work to safely restore power. 
  • Entergy employees are navigating the COVID-19 pandemic by taking additional steps. Crews will continue to practice social distancing, and we ask that customers do the same. For our safety and yours, please stay away from work zones.
  • Customers without power can help in the restoration process by turning off major appliances but leaving on a lamp or other light to indicate when power is restored. Then, gradually turn other appliances to spread out the increase in power usage over a longer time. Visit entergy.com/cold to learn more.

Conserve Electricity:

Remember that extreme cold can drive increased electricity consumption.  Follow these easy steps to reduce consumption and lower your usage:

  • Heating can account for as much as 55% of your monthly electric bill. Setting the thermostat to 68 degrees in the winter is an easy way to reduce how much energy you use. Every degree above 68 on the thermostat can increase your bill by about 3%.
  • Conserve hot water. Wrap your electric water heater with a water heater blanket that can be found at local home improvement stores and set the thermostat to 120 degrees or medium.
  • Keep all doors and windows closed. Constant traffic will let out the warm air, forcing your heater to work harder to keep the room at the set temperature.
  • Ensure fans are turning the right way. Fans should be run at a low speed clockwise during the winter. This helps keep the cold air from blowing down on you.
  • Keep the air circulating. Don’t block heat registers or air returns with curtains or furniture.
  • Leverage the sun. During the day, open your curtains and blinds to let in the warm sunlight. Close them at night to reduce heat loss.

Stay Informed:

We continuously keep our communities informed throughout a storm using the following channels:

  • Download our free app for your smartphone at com/app.
  • Sign up for text alerts. From your cellphone text REG to 36778.
  • Visit the Entergy Storm Center website and our View Outages
  • Follow us on Twitter.com/entergytx or Facebook.com/entergytx.
  • Call us at 800-9OUTAGE (800-968-8243).
  • Follow updates in your local news media like radio television and newspapers.

Texas Editorial Team