Extreme cold weather leads to power outages

Many of your neighbors on the city's southside, along with plenty of Beeville residents, had a tough time staying warm Tuesday night after some pretty significant power outages.

CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - Many of your neighbors on the city's southside, along with plenty of Beeville residents, had a tough time staying warm Tuesday night after some pretty significant power outages.

In fact, some remained without power into Wednesday night.

The outages can be blamed on the cold weather, and a surge in people using their heaters. That surge caused the power grid to reach its capacity in some areas, and that caused the outages.

Crews with American Electric Power Texas said they are on standby in case another round of outages happens Wednesday night.

Gary and Jackie Ganschow were trying to stay warm Wednesday as they patiently waited for their power to be restored.

"Staying in bed is nice because you don't have to get up and get in the cold," they said. "Basically we've been staying in bed. Doesn't give us the opportunity to do the things we need to do."

The couple lives off Excalibur and Round Table streets. They weren't the only ones left without electricity on one of the coldest nights of this season so far. At the height of the outage, more than 3,000 residents were impacted on the city's southside, one of the biggest problem areas overnight.

Some areas went without electricity for over 12 hours as crews worked to restore power.
At Kaffie Middle School, students ended up being sent home early Wednesday afternoon because of the outage.

AEP Texas spokesperson Omar Lopez said our power grid is made to handle the extreme heat outdoors, but not so much the extreme cold.

"It typically takes about four times as much electricity to heat the air as it does to cool the air, so last night what we found, everyone using that much electricity really caused our system to overload," Lopez said.

As the need for power grows on the city's southside, Lopez said AEP Texas is always doing what it can to improve their infrastructure.

"Wherever the city grows, we are always going to take a hard look at that area and deliver the maximum service we can," Lopez said. "We're going to make sure the infrastructure is prepared for that growth. We are always improving the infrastructure so we can keep up with the growth demands of the city."

Lopez said there are some things you can do at home to help keep the heat on for everyone.

"We're used to keeping it very warm in the winter here, setting it at a comfortable 68," Lopez said. "Dressing in layers will always help keep us warm. Avoid opening and closing doors to keep that heat inside."

To report a power outage, you can do so by going to aeptexas.com.

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