TUESDAY LIVE BLOG: Latest winter storm reinforces icy roads, thousands still without power

Austin

NOTICE: This live blog for Tuesday is no longer being updated. To see the latest information on the power outages and other winter storm information, go to our new live blog.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Power outages are still keeping hundreds of thousands of people in the dark across Central Texas with possibly no end coming on Tuesday and another round of winter weather on the way Wednesday.

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Winter Storm Warning issued by the National Weather Service in the Austin metro area is in place from 6 p.m. Tuesday to 6 a.m. Thursday due to another round of potential freezing rain and snow accumulation on the way.

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3:40 a.m. Wednesday

Austin-Travis County EMS said Tuesday was a “record breaking day” for calls for service.

In a tweet, ATCEMS said medics and staff responded to 1,323 calls Tuesday — including 31 traffic crashes with five rollovers, 38 carbon monoxide poisonings, 69 environmental exposures and 104 falls on ice.

3:15 a.m. Wednesday

Latest power outage numbers in Austin/Central Texas.

3:01 a.m. Wednesday

The Cedar Park Police Department is dealing with the same phone line issues as Tuesday night, which is affecting its 911 line, according to a tweet.

CPPD says all 911 calls are being routed to Williamson County and then directed back to Cedar Park.

2:30 a.m. Wednesday

Austin skyline from Congress Bridge
A view of the Austin skyline from the Congress Bridge. (Todd Bailey/KXAN)

The Austin skyline looks darker on Wednesday morning during Central Texas’ fourth winter storm over the last week.

As the energy crisis continues throughout the state and millions are without power, the Downtown Austin Alliance asked owners and operators of the largest downtown buildings and construction sites to turn off unnecessary lighting and equipment Tuesday to conserve energy.

1:34 a.m. Wednesday

The Hays County Office of Emergency Services has an update for its COVID-19 vaccine schedule.

12:59 a.m. Wednesday

12:15 a.m. Wednesday

Serious amount of water at the IMT at the Domain apartments in north Austin. A viewer sent this to KXAN Tuesday night, saying that residents have been waiting outside since before 9 p.m. due of the issue.

11:30 p.m. Tuesday

KXAN meteorologist Nick Bannin is out monitoring the latest winter storm Tuesday night. Bannin found an unoccupied car at Lamar Boulevard and Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard with serious damage.

No one was inside the vehicle, but the damage showed the severity of the storm and the dangerous condition of the roads.

Check out Bannin’s full report below.

10:55 p.m. Tuesday

The city of Georgetown has issued a boil water notice to residents in the Florence and Liberty Hill areas “due to extended, sub-freezing temperatures at the Hoover Pump Station and Carriage Oaks Elevated Tank, and subsequent loss of water pressure in the system.”

At 10:55 p.m. Tuesday, the boil water notice was extended to include the following areas, totaling 14,720 customers:

  • The Westinghouse area bound by Interstate 35 to FM 1460 (about 1,700 customers)
  • Areas west of Georgetown, including Santa Rita, Northlake, and Andice (about 11,000 customers)
  • Customers in the Florence (720 customers) and Liberty Hill (1,300) areas are still in the boil water advisory.

10:35 p.m. Tuesday

Here is an outage update for Austin/Central Texas.

10:20 p.m. Tuesday

Texas Department of Transportation crews are still working on the Austin roads as more freezing rain from another winter storm arrives in the area.

Diann Hodges, a spokesperson for TxDOT, said the pre-treatment chemicals the trucks lay down only works when the roads are dry. Crews have been working 24-hour shifts, scraping off the top layer of snow and using de-icing agents to try to get to that level.

10:03 p.m. Tuesday

The University of Texas-Austin campus has extended its closure another day with all events and classes, including virtual/online, canceled until at least Friday at 8 a.m.

9:50 p.m. Tuesday

Travis County Water Control and Improvement District 17 is issuing a boil water notice for all areas, aside from Steiner Ranch, on Tuesday night.

A statement reads — “customers in the Travis County WCID No.17 service area, other than Steiner Ranch, may be experiencing a reduction or loss of water service. Full restoration of service is ongoing but unknown at this time.”

For questions and updates, go to www.wcid17.org

9:15 p.m. Tuesday

Austin Energy reports 190,830 customers are without power as of 9:15 p.m. — around 37% of its customers.

9 p.m. Tuesday

County Line Special Utility District on the eastern side of Kyle and Uhland has issued a boil water notice as a precaution. “Due to the freezing weather and power outages, our water tanks are lower than normal,” a spokesperson said.

8:45 p.m. Tuesday

The Downtown Austin Alliance is asking owners and operators of the largest downtown buildings and construction sites to turn off unnecessary lighting and equipment Tuesday.

More than 800 property owners are on the list to be contacted to scale back their nonessential electricity use to help out.

8:35 p.m. Tuesday

Lee County Water Supply has issued a boil water notice for customers in the following areas: TX 21 and FM 141 in Dime Box going south to Giddings City Limits. FM 1697 and FM 180 to Nails Creek Park and south approximately 5 miles. CR 117 to all of the Leobau area. All Country Corner Area. Country Corner to FM 2440. All of FM 2440 to TX 21. All of County Road 113 to TX 21.

For further information, contact Lee County Water Supply at: 979-542-0770 or 979-542-1611.

8:08 p.m. Tuesday

Flights at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport are expected to resume Wednesday at 1 p.m., weather permitting, according to the airport.

Flights before 1 p.m. that day are still canceled.

8 p.m. Tuesday

Austin Energy is warning customers that ERCOT is ordering the utility company to “shed more load” and people “may again lose power,” according to a tweet.

“We are frustrated but we are working to meet our obligations to maintain the state’s electrical grid,” the tweet reads.

6:30 p.m. Tuesday

Governor Greg Abbott is calling on Electric Reliability Council of Texas leadership to step down after the ongoing winter storm nearly maxed the state’s electric grid, leaving millions of Texans without power for days.

In a live interview with ABC13 in Houston, Gov. Abbott said ERCOT “has provided zero answers to him.” When asked if leaders should resign, Abbott answered with a “yes.

5:45 p.m. Tuesday

ATCEMS said it’s responded to 907 calls for service Tuesday.

5:30 p.m. Tuesday

Austin ISD has opened two more warming centers for families. Here’s a list of warm places people can go:

  1. Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Road: Austin called this its “primary” warming center. Single adults in need of shelter should report to this warming center. When Capital Metro resumes service, you can use bus routes 1, 7, 10, 20, 801, 30 to access. Rides are free for those looking for shelter.
  2. Downtown Salvation Army Shelter, 501 E. 8th Street: Families should report here. Use Capital Metro bus routes 2, 4, 6, 7, and 10.
  3. Mendez Middle School, 5106 Village Square Drive: There is limited capacity, and this is intended for Austin’s most vulnerable populations, especially those who have medical devices that need power to operate.
  4. Northeast Early College High School, 7104 Berkman Drive: There is limited capacity, and this is intended for Austin’s most vulnerable populations, especially those who have medical devices that need power to operate.
  5. Lee Elementary School, 3308 Hampton Road: Open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. to any families that need access to warmth.
  6. Murchison Middle School 3700 North Hills Dr.: Open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. to any families that need access to warmth

The City of Taylor and Taylor ISD and the Bill Pickett Educational Foundation are opening a warming center for residents at the Taylor ISD administration building at 3101 Main St. It will be open from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. It doesn’t have overnight capacity but is a warm place to be during the day, it said.

5:21 p.m. Tuesday

The National Weather Service shared some tips on how to stay warm when the power is out:

  • Close blinds/curtains to try to keep in some heat
  • Close off rooms to avoid wasting or losing heat
  • Stuff towels or rags into the cracks under doors
  • Wear layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing.
  • Eat and drink. Food provides energy, but avoid alcohol or caffeine

You can also see what tips Central Texans say is working for them to keep warm in this story.

5:00 p.m. Tuesday

Current outages and whether outages are trending higher or lower:

Austin Energy – 186,766 customers without power as of 5 p.m. Tuesday (lower)
Oncor – 82,546 customers without power in Central Texas as of 5 p.m. Tuesday (same)
Pedernales Electric Cooperative – 37,849 customers without power in Central Texas as of 5 p.m. Tuesday (lower)
Bluebonnet – 11,200 customers without power in Central Texas as of 5 p.m. Tuesday (lower)
CTEC – 24,861 customers without power in Central Texas as of 5 p.m. Tuesday

4:33 p.m. Tuesday

The Downtown Austin Alliance has reached out to those who own or operate downtown buildings, asking them to reduce electricity use to only that which is essential.

“Some of the downtown buildings must maintain some power usage to keep critical systems infrastructure functioning and others must remain nearly fully operational due to their designation as critical buildings, including hospitals, warming sites and others,” it said.

It also shared this list of recommendations for building operators and owners:

  • Turn down thermostats to 68 degrees or lower
  • Turn off all electronics and unplug any machines to eliminate the use of phantom currents
  • Minimize or completely turn off lighting, other than interior and exterior lights needed for safety measures

4:25 p.m. Tuesday

Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell says 40% of residents in his county are without power, and he estimates 75% of people in the county could be affected intermittently over the next two days. He says other areas of concern include water and burst pipes as well as cell towers.

4:20 p.m. Tuesday

The City of Austin held a press conference ahead of another round of winter weather. Mayor Steve Adler said people should work to reduce their energy consumption, including businesses. He also said people should hunker down where they are if they can. If they need to leave, they should do so sooner rather than later.

“If you have power, please almost try to live as though you don’t,” Adler said, suggesting people only use lights they need and turn down the heat, to try to conserve power and set Austin Energy up to being able to return power to other homes.

4:05 p.m. Tuesday

Current outages and whether outages are trending higher or lower:

Austin Energy – 191,245 customers without power as of 4 p.m. Tuesday (lower)
Oncor – 82,546 customers without power in Central Texas as of 4 p.m. Tuesday (lower)
Pedernales Electric Cooperative – 41,849 customers without power in Central Texas as of 4 p.m. Tuesday (lower)
Bluebonnet – 14,051 customers without power in Central Texas as of 4 p.m. Tuesday (lower)

3:44 p.m. Tuesday

PEC says its outage map is temporarily unavailable. It’s working on upgrades to the system “in an effort to more accurately reflect power outages, we are performing a system update to the outage map.”

3:31 p.m. Tuesday

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said the Senate Business & Commerce committee will be holding hearings on the power outages Texas has experienced. It came the same day Gov. Abbott identified an ERCOT investigation and reform as a legislative priority.

“We must get to the bottom of this to be sure we are better prepared even if an unprecedented weather event happens again,” Patrick said.

3:05 p.m. Tuesday

Pictures from Manor Grocery store on Tuesday showed empty shelves and long lines.

2:35 p.m. Tuesday

The city of Georgetown has issued a boil water notice to residents in the Florence and Liberty Hill areas “due to extended, sub-freezing temperatures at the Hoover Pump Station and Carriage Oaks Elevated Tank, and subsequent loss of water pressure in the system.” The red areas are the affected neighborhoods.

Other residents in the are could be asked to boil their water later on. The city is asking residents to prepare by filling bathtubs with water and limiting flushing.

“People who are in need of water and are unable to boil water due to extended power outages need to call 911, so they can be transported to warming shelters,” the city said.

2:30 p.m. Tuesday

The City of Austin is hosting a virtual press conference at 4 p.m. to address the severe weather. Mayor Steve Adler, Travis County Judge Andy Brown, City Manager Spencer Cronk and Austin Energy General Manager Jackie Sargent will be in attendance.

KXAN will be streaming the press conference in this story and on Facebook.

2:10 p.m. Tuesday

Aqua Water Supply in Bastrop is asking all customers to boil their water after it said all of its system experienced low pressure as a result of winter storm conditions and power outages Tuesday morning.

2:05 p.m. Tuesday

Austin’s pro soccer team is responding to fierce criticism after several residents noticed the team’s stadium kept its lights on while thousands of Texans were without power during bitter cold temperatures.

These lights, Austin FC says, must be disconnected by a licensed electrician — which was increasingly difficult to get as icy road conditions made travel dangerous on Sunday and Monday.

2 p.m. Tuesday

Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted “we are ordering an investigation into ERCOT and immediate transparency by ERCOT” Tuesday afternoon.

He released a statement along with the tweet saying Texans being without power for nearly two days is unacceptable.

“I have issued an executive order adding an emergency legislative item to review the preparations and decisions by ERCOT so we can determine what caused this problem and find long-term solutions,” the statement read.

1:30 p.m. Tuesday

Current outages and whether outages are trending higher or lower:

Austin Energy – 204,682 customers without power as of 1 p.m. Tuesday (slightly lower)
Oncor – 83,127 customers without power in Central Texas (lower)
Pedernales Electric Cooperative – 105,919 customers without power in Central Texas (much lower)
Bluebonnet – 29,363 customers without power in Central Texas (much higher)

Total Outages – 423,091 Central Texans without power, representing 38.27% of the customers for the four utilities above

KXAN’s Alyssa Goard has been without power for 33 hours in southwest Austin, and people in her apartment complex have been taking refuge in their cars that still have gas, so they’ve been able to run their heaters.

1:20 p.m. Tuesday

Austin City Council member McKenzie Kelly said a warming center at Del Valle High School is staffed and ready to accept people.

Other warming centers in Austin are:

  1. Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Road: Austin called this its “primary” warming center. Single adults in need of shelter should report to this warming center. When Capital Metro resumes service, you can use bus routes 1, 7, 10, 20, 801, 30 to access. Rides are free for those looking for shelter.
  2. Mendez Middle School, 5106 Village Square Dr.: There is limited capacity and this is intended for  intended for Austin’s most vulnerable populations, especially those who have medical devices that need power to operate.
  3. Northeast Early College High School, 7104 Berkman Dr.: There is limited capacity and this is intended for  intended for Austin’s most vulnerable populations, especially those who have medical devices that need power to operate.

1 p.m. Tuesday

The Austin Fire Department has responded to a number of different calls Tuesday:

Call type categories:

  • Collisions/Rescues: 9/0
  • Wires down/arcing: 1
  • Public Assist: 12
  • Alarm Activations: 60
  • Fires: 8
  • Broken Water Pipes: 135
  • Total 911 calls for service for AFD jurisdiction: 1,170 
  • Total 911 calls for service for Travis Co.: 225

12:50 p.m. Tuesday

“While @ERCOT_ISO says conditions are improving, we want customers to know this a dynamic situation + conditions are changing throughout the day,” Austin Energy Tweeted. “Customers should be prepared to not have power through Tuesday night and possibly longer.”

It said it is not rotating outages right now because all circuits that aren’t part of the “critical load” in the city are turned off. It can’t add any more load to circuits to be able to rotate through them.

Leander police also say all the propane locations in the city are out of propane and it asks people to not come out because it’s causing large backups.

12:20 p.m. Tuesday

Austin has added some warming shelters for vulnerable people who need a place to go:

  1. Palmer Events Center, 900 Barton Springs Road: Austin called this its “primary” warming center. Single adults in need of shelter should report to this warming center. When Capital Metro resumes service, you can use bus routes 1, 7, 10, 20, 801, 30 to access. Rides are free for those looking for shelter.
  2. Mendez Middle School, 5106 Village Square Dr.: There is limited capacity and this is intended for  intended for Austin’s most vulnerable populations, especially those who have medical devices that need power to operate.
  3. Northeast Early College High School, 7104 Berkman Dr.: There is limited capacity and this is intended for  intended for Austin’s most vulnerable populations, especially those who have medical devices that need power to operate.

“The City and County have put out an urgent plea to businesses to reduce their power consumption as well. Any measure that can be taken by homes with power or commercial businesses to reduce power usage is a step closer to returning power to homes in our community.”

Williamson County is also opening up sites for oxygen-dependent people to recharge their oxygen condensers.

“These facilities are being opened to address a critical medical need and will be open specifically for these individuals only. Assuming the weather cooperates, these facilities will open again tomorrow starting at 9 a.m.”

These facilities will be open starting today:

  • Open at noon: WilCo Sheriff’s Office Training Room, 508 Rock St., Georgetown
  • Open at 1 p.m.: Williamson County Inner Loop Annex, 301 S. E. Inner Loop, Georgetown
  • Open at noon: Hutto Police Department, 401 Front Street, Hutto
  • Open at 1 p.m.: Leander Police Department, 705 Leander Drive, Leander

12:05 p.m. Tuesday

Austin-Travis County EMS said it’s responded to 524 calls since midnight. They are on pace for 1,000 calls Tuesday.

12 p.m. Tuesday

Lines have formed at an H-E-B in south Austin. H-E-Bs in Central Texas are expected to open from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday. Around 11 a.m., David Yeomans snapped a photo of a line outside a downtown Austin CVS as well as a line outside the H-E-B on William Cannon.

  • People line up outside a downtown Austin CVS Feb. 16, 2021 (KXAN Photo/David Yeomans)
  • People line up outside a south Austin H-E-B Feb. 16, 2021 (Courtesy Alexandria Campos)
  • Line at H-E-B on William Cannon Feb. 16, 2021 (KXAN Photo/David Yeomans)

Joanne Romanovich said she waited two hours to get into the Southpark Meadows Target.

11:45 a.m. Tuesday

ERCOT reform will become an emergency item this legislative session, Gov. Greg Abbott announced.

11:35 a.m. Tuesday

TxDOT is also warning people to not walk on the highway because cars could lose control and hit people

11:30 a.m. Tuesday

ERCOT has told local utilities to restore power to 400,000 homes in the last hour. It says, “Generation availability is improving.”

A temporary shelter at Del Valle High School has reopened for the day.

11:20 a.m. Tuesday

Current outages and whether outages are trending higher or lower:

Austin Energy – 215,347 customers without power as of 10:10 a.m. Tuesday (about the same)
Oncor – 91,688 customers without power in Central Texas (higher)
Pedernales Electric Cooperative – 130,842 customers without power in Central Texas (higher)
Bluebonnet – 22, 185 customers without power in Central Texas (lower)

11:15 a.m.

The Texas Union is opening as a warming center from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.

11:10 a.m. Tuesday

ERCOT is warning of a scam circulating on social media. Apparently scammers are asking people to share their private account numbers. “Don’t do it!” ERCOT said. We don’t need any of your info to get your power back on — we are working as fast as we possibly can.”

ERCOT’s president and CEO answered questions from KXAN Tuesday morning.

“We are trying to get people’s power back on as quickly as possible,” said Bill Magness. “But in order to do that, we need to be able to safely manage the balance of supply and demand on the grid.”

Magness explained that ERCOT’s primary function is to keep that balance, to ensure large collapses don’t happen.

“As hard as these outages are, they avoid a much more catastrophic situation,” he said.

11:01 a.m. Tuesday

  • Shelves at a Valero gas station near Jollyville and Braker Feb. 16, 2021 (KXAN Photo/Haley Cihock)
  • Shelves at a Valero gas station near Jollyville and Braker Feb. 16, 2021 (KXAN Photo/Haley Cihock)

The view from a Valero gas station near Jollyville and Braker Lane, which is near an H-E-B that’s expected to open at noon. H-E-B has said it’s opening its stores from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday, and other grocery stores have also announced changes to their hours of operation.

10:20 a.m. Tuesday

Updated power outage numbers from Austin Energy, Oncor and Bluebonnet all show higher numbers than reported earlier Tuesday morning. We are currently tabulating the numbers for Pedernales Electric Co-Op and will update this section when we’re done.

Current outage information:

  • Austin Energy: 220,259
  • Oncor: 90,819
  • Bluebonnet: 33,623
  • Pedernales (as of 6:10 a.m. Tuesday): 92,337

9:40 a.m. Tuesday

The Austin Fire Department released new call response numbers Tuesday, and they received nearly 1,900 calls for service and responded to 1,035 of them. From 12 p.m. Monday to 12 a.m. Tuesday, AFD responded to 466 calls for broken water pipes.

9:20 a.m. Tuesday

ERCOT says it expects to be able to restore power to some in Texas as more energy comes online Tuesday afternoon, but they aren’t sure how much energy will be available through wind and solar output.

9 a.m. Tuesday

Pflugerville ISD is cancelling all classes Wednesday, Feb. 17. Thursday, Feb. 18 will be a virtual asynchronous learning day.

8:25 a.m. Tuesday

ERCOT released a statement Tuesday morning, saying: “The number of controlled outages we have to do remains high. We are optimistic that we will be able to reduce the number throughout the day.”

Austin-Travis County EMS gave KXAN an update to what types of calls it responded to in the overnight hours from midnight to 7 a.m.:

  • 10 environmental exposures
  • 14 falls
  • 5 collisions, 2 rollovers
  • 8 toxic exposures – examples of these calls Tuesday include someone using their coal grill inside the house for heat, as well as fumes from a generator running in the garage

For reference, EMS had 13 toxic exposures Monday, but it had eight in the first seven hours Tuesday.

EMS’ message to the public is to please stay inside and off the roads to reduce preventable accidents and injuries that could cause you to call 9-1-1

Meanwhile, Hutto ISD announced it will cancel all school, including remote learning, for Wednesday and Thursday.

Llano ISD has also cancelled all classes for Wednesday, Feb. 17.

8:10 a.m. Tuesday

Oncor said in a tweet it was able to restore power to some of its customers overnight, but due to “poor grid conditions,” they couldn’t rotate the outages so people will be in the dark for even longer.

Oncor issued a statement saying that ERCOT, the agency that oversees the state’s power grid, doesn’t know when the grid will be stable enough to restore power to more people across the state.

8:05 a.m. Tuesday

CapMetro originally planned to start service at 10 a.m. Tuesday, but like Monday, they decided to suspend service. The public transit agency said in a tweet it is “focusing all effort on emergency operations to support those at cold weather shelters and those needing life-saving trips.”

7:41 a.m. Tuesday

Oncor sent out a news release saying that “at this time, ERCOT is unable to predict when grid conditions will stabilize.” Oncor said it is urging all customers to prepare for extended outages to continue.

“Oncor was able to rotate some outages overnight, but poor grid conditions have continued to prevent us and other utilities from rotating, or rolling, the entirety of these outages, leading to extended periods without power for many of our customers,” Oncor added. “We also urge customers to prioritize the safety of themselves, their loved ones and their neighbors.”

Tips for staying warm include:

  • Close blinds and curtains and closing room doors to help contain heat
  • Stuff towels in the cracks under doors to help contain heat
  • Many warming stations or shelters have also been opened. You can find them by calling 211.

Oncor added that despite the mandatory outages from ERCOT, Oncor continues to repair any lines damaged during the winter storm so that when it is able to turn the power back on, it can do so.

7:35 a.m. Tuesday

Flights in and out of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport are canceled for the second consecutive day Tuesday, and officials want people to plan for additional delays and potentially more cancelations in the days ahead.

Mandy McClendon with the airport said crews are working around the clock to try to get all the snow and ice cleared from the airport, saying there was up to 6.5 inches in some spots.

7:15 a.m. Tuesday

Cedar Park Police are again having problems with their 911 phone lines. They are rerouting calls to the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office.

It’s an ongoing problem as Cedar Park Police also had phone outages around midnight and 4 a.m.

7:05 a.m. Tuesday

Most grocery stores across Central Texas plan to reopen Tuesday. H-E-B, Fiesta Mart, and Randall’s all said stores plan to reopen, but customers should check on social media or call their local stores before getting on the road.

H-E-B store hours:
• Austin and Central Texas stores: Tuesday: 12 noon – 5 p.m.
• Wimberley & Dripping Springs: Tuesday: 12 noon – 5 p.m.

Fiesta Mart store hours:

6:35 a.m. Tuesday

Latest power outage numbers show there are at least 411,444 people in the KXAN viewing area without power. That’s almost 37% of the 1.1 million energy customers.

  • Austin Energy – 215,507 customers without power (42.05% of customers)
  • Oncor – 83,934 customers without power in the KXAN viewing area (46.4% of customers)
  • Pedernales – 92,337 customers without power in the KXAN viewing area (30.1% of customers)
  • Bluebonnet – 19,666 customers without power in the KXAN viewing area (16.1% of customers)


6:20 a.m. Tuesday

Austin-Travis County EMS had a “historic” day Monday when it came to responding to calls.

A tweet from the agency said medics responded to 1,435 calls Monday, including 93 for falls, 69 for exposure, 13 for toxic/carbon monoxide and nine for collisions.

6 a.m. Tuesday

The Austin Fire Department is urging people not to burn charcoal indoors as a source of heat. Crews responded to four toxic exposure calls Monday due to potential carbon monoxide poisoning from charcoal fumes.

5:20 a.m. Tuesday

H-E-B stores in Central Texas will be open from 12-5 p.m. Tuesday, the grocery store said Monday night. The company closed its stores Monday due to the winter storm, and they say that stores can modify their hours at any time to adjust to local conditions, but for now, stores plan to open.

This also includes stores in Dripping Springs and Wimberley, the company said.

5 a.m. Tuesday

KXAN’s Tahera Rahman reports the Austin Fire Department responded to more than 500 broken water pipe calls Monday, and there’s bound to be more Tuesday as temperatures sink to single digits overnight.

Across Texas, 4 million people are still without power. Austin Energy is reporting 215,223 customers without power, and Pedernales Electric has 102,068 customers out.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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