Lubbock announces Energy Alert, near zero temperatures, many West Texans without power

Local News

LUBBOCK, Texas — Lubbock described an urgent situation Monday morning with Lubbock Power and Light, Xcel Energy and multiple electric cooperatives declaring an Energy Alert. Xcel made a similar statement earlier in the day.

“Additionally, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has requested the conservation of electric and natural gas energy,” the city said in a written statement.

Extreme cold led to energy shortages in the Southwest Power Pool’s (SPP) region which includes Lubbock.

“This is an ongoing record weather event, bringing some of the coldest temperatures we’ve seen in 40 years,” said David McCalla, Executive Director for LP&L. “This has put a strain on grids across the state, including our region, and today we’re asking our customers to please do what they can to reduce their electric use for the stability of the overall grid.”

The official low temperature in Lubbock was zero degrees Fahrenheit. At the time of Lubbock’s announcement, it was 1 degree outside as officially reported by the National Weather Service. Wind chills were well below zero with 15 degrees below zero being common across the region.

The issue was not confined to SPP, but ERCOT as well which is the power grid for most of Texas including a sizeable portion of the KAMC/KLBK viewing area.

As of 10:40 a.m. Monday, 2.67 million homes or businesses in Texas were without power according to poweroutage.us/area/state/texas.

Lyntegar was forced to disconnect customers overnight.

“ERCOT has declared EEA 3 and directed Lyntegar Electric Cooperative to manually shed load in order to avoid an uncontrolled system wide blackout. We have complied with this directive and have 1,980 meters out of service,” Lyntegar said just after 4:00 a.m. Monday. “As soon as we get permission from ERCOT we will restore load.”

Dawson County outages were still widespread by mid-morning on Monday in the Lyntegar area.

Tahoka set up an emergency shelter on Sunday.

Suggestions on how reduce electric load include:

  • Set thermostats to 68 degrees or lower.
  • Suspend use of electrical appliances (dishwashers, washing machines, clothes dryers, vacuum cleaners, etc.)
  • Put off tasks at work, if possible, that would demand electricity (power tools, maintenance equipment, etc.).
  • Turn off televisions and electronic equipment unless they are necessary to conduct business or to ensure your health and safety.
  • Turn off unnecessary lighting, leaving on only enough to move about safely indoors.

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