HOUSTON — Some people have got their power back and others are still waiting as the entire state of Texas is experiencing an unprecedented power shortage due to a severe winter storm.
Early Monday, ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas), the agency that oversees the state's electric grid, declared the state of Texas at the highest energy emergency level because of lower power supply and high demand due to extremely low temperatures during the winter storm.
On Tuesday afternoon, CenterPoint said more power outages were possible because ERCOT directed them to reduce the electric system load.
"Customers should make preparations now for possible additional outages," the company said in a tweet.
When is the power coming back on?
There are still more than a million people without power in the Houston area. Everyone wants to know when it will be back on.
Even though some of the ice and snow is melting, Kenneth Mercado, VP for CenterPoint Electric Utilities says it just won’t be enough to get everyone their power back today, tonight or possibly even tomorrow.
The good news -- CenterPoint got power back on for a lot of people at around 4 a.m. Tuesday. We’re told they focused on neighborhoods that lost power first. The bad news is – CenterPoint has to shut other people’s power off to balance the grid.
Those rotating outages will continue through Tuesday night.
Here's what Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo said on Tuesday:
“We must assume the worst,” Hidalgo said about the current power outages.
She's the latest government official to point a finger at ERCOT. She said it’s possible the current outages will last beyond the winter storm event and accuses ERCOT of being overly optimistic with its repair and power restoration estimates.
Watch out for CenterPoint imposters
Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said there have been reports of people dressing up like CenterPoint employees to gain access to homes. Remember, the outages in Houston due to the severe weather do not require CenterPoint workers to enter residences.