Several crews of workers rushed this Wednesday to restore electricity to approximately 3.4 million users in the United States Which is still without electricity after a winter storm passes, while another barrage of ice and snow threatens to cause more chaos.
Pictures: The polar cold wave freezes over the United States of America
The new storm front is expected to bring more hardships to states unaccustomed to such freezing weather, specifically parts of Texas, Arkansas and those in the lower Mississippi Valley.
Misery does not give a truce to the people of the region. Bob Oravic, the chief meteorologist for the National Weather Service, said, referring to Texas.
The system is expected to move to the northeast of the country on Thursday. More than 100 million people live in the regions Where there is some kind of winter weather alert in effect, according to the weather service.
At least 30 people have died this week due to the severe weather, some of them while trying to warm themselves indoors. In the greater Houston area, a A family succumbed to carbon monoxide from a car exhaust in their garage. Others died when they used a stove to warm themselves.
Low historical temperatures have been recorded in different cities. Scientists say that the polar vortex, a climate pattern that usually persists in the Arctic, is Expanding to lower latitudes and for a longer period, And that global warming is partly to blame.
Power utilities from Minnesota to Texas to Mississippi are carrying out intermittent power cuts to reduce the load on distribution networks to meet intense heating and electricity demands. In Mexico, intermittent blackouts covered more than a third of the country on Tuesday as storms disrupted natural gas imports from Texas.
The worst blackouts in America happened in Texas, As there were still 3 million homes and businesses without electricity as of Wednesday noon. The company that runs the state’s power lines, ERCOT, said service was restored Tuesday night to 600,000 homes and businesses. Authorities said they don’t know when everyone’s power will be restored, but ERCOT Billa Magness chief expressed confidence that many users will partially restore service as late as Wednesday or Thursday afternoon at least.
Magnus also defended the forced blackout to “prevent more catastrophic events than those seen this week.”
Dashawn Walker, 33, was excited about his return Wednesday to his apartment in Dallas. He had stayed at a suburban hotel on Tuesday night after power cuts since Sunday, but said he was paid $ 474 per night.
“It’s crazy,” Walker said. I mean, why should you all go to a hotel in the midst of a crisis?
At least 200,000 other users remain without electricity in four Appalachian states, and nearly the same number in the Northwest Territory, according to the poweroutage.us portal, which tracks reports of outages from power companies.
Oklahoma’s largest energy company reported no blackouts on Wednesday, a day after intermittent outages in and around Oklahoma City caused electric heaters and heaters to shut down, as well as lighting in subzero weather. However, Oklahoma Gas & Electric has warned customers of other possible outages due to extreme cold and rising demand for natural gas.