Posted in Life

The Domino Effect of the Texas Winter Storm


I'm sure that by now most of you have heard about the crisis that 
Texas has gone through recently. I have been incredibly blessed 
during this terrible time. My power was only out for a few hours 
and I was without internet for a couple of days. But overall, I 
have been safe and warm. I have plenty of clean drinking water. 
This has not been the case for millions of people within the state.

First, we were hit with snow and temperatures unlike anything we
are normally used to. The state got between 2 and 11 inches of 
snow. With snow on the ground, temperatures plunged to well below 
freezing. This terrible cold then started a domino effect of 
disastrous events. 

The Texas power grid, unprepared for the extreme temperatures, 
had 40% of their operation go down. This caused power outages 
statewide. No power meant no heat. No heat, meant freezing pipes. 
For those heating with natural gas, some of the gas lines froze 
making this no longer an option for heat.    

Without heat and water, for days in many cases, people started 
seeking shelter elsewhere to stay warm. With no power for an 
extended period of time, the water treatment plants froze up. 
Clean drinking water became unavailable in many areas. People 
were told to boil their water before consuming it. For those 
trying to tough it out in their homes without power, this was 
impossible to do. If their pipes were not already frozen,then 
they had no electricity to boil water if they had any.  

The water situation became more and more dire. With water 
treatment plants trying to maintain the flow, service was 
interrupted at irregular intervals. This disruption caused low 
water pressure in places that did have water. Places like nursing 
homes, didn't have enough water pressure to function. 

People went to extreme lengths to try to stay warm. Using these 
unsafe methods caused deaths and house fires. In one instance, 
due to the extreme low temperatures the indoor sprinkler system 
didn't work and the house burned down. In many cases, the water 
pressure was too low for the firemen to use existing fire hydrants. 
They had to have the water trucked in to fight the blaze.


Once the temperatures finally started to rise, the anticipated 
blessing of pipes thawing out, turned into yet another tragedy. 
Pipes burst, flooding peoples homes. 


And the hits just keep on coming.

The COVID vaccine centers were shut down, bringing the planned 
vaccinations to a halt.  

The freezing, thawing and refreezing of the roads made driving 
too dangerous to drive. The supply trucks for grocery stores 
and gas stations couldn't make deliveries. People that ventured
out to find supplies were met with empty store shelves and closed
gas stations. 

The storm hit Texas on February 13th. The last I knew, there 
are still more than 100,000 people without power and 46 deaths.
Hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced from their 
homes. Many people are still without water.  

If you would like to help the needy in Texas, please give to 
The Salvation Army or the Texas food banks and contribute 
to them. The homeless and low income people have suffered the most. 
Please keep these people in your prayers. 

Again, I have been incredibly blessed. I have had no real 
hardships. The above is just a summary of the events here. 
There are countless tragic stories from individuals here.

Count your blessings, my friends. 

Copyright (C) 2021 Penny Wilson             

     


 

Author:

Penny Wilson is a freelance writer who writes in several genres. She has written articles for WOW Women on Writing. Her poetry has been published in online journals, such as Ariel Chart, Spill Words Press and the Poppy Road Review. Penny is a member of the Austin Poetry Society. Her poetry has been featured in the publication America's Emerging Poets 2018 & 2019 by Z Publishing, Poets Quarterly and Dual Coast Magazine published by Prolific Press. You can find more of her writings on her blog at https://pennywilsonwrites.com/ and follow her on Twitter @pennywilson123.

13 thoughts on “The Domino Effect of the Texas Winter Storm

  1. It may no longer be prudent to have each recipient building’s entire electrical delivery relying on external power lines that are too susceptible to various crippling power-outage-causing events (e.g. storms and tectonic shifts)?
    And then there’s the potentially disastrous coronal mass ejection (CME) effect to consider, in which extensive power grids are vulnerable to being fried.

    I could really appreciate the liberating effect of having my own independently accessed solar-cell power supply (clear skies permitting, of course), especially considering my/our dangerous reliance on electricity. And it will not require huge land-flooding and potentially collapsing water dams, nor constructing towering wind turbine farms.

    Each building having its own solar-cell-panel power storage/system — at least as an emergency/backup source of power — makes sense (except, of course, to the various big energy corporation CEOs whose concern is dollars-and-cents profit margin).

    Many Texans may now be realizing this.

    Like

  2. My dear Penny, thank you for sharing what’s happening and has occurred in Texas. I am thankful all is mostly OK with you. But the challenges faced by many are heartbreaking. I’m so sorry and, for sure, am including Texans in my prayers.

    Like

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