- Texas was minutes and maybe seconds from being without power for months due to snowfall
- The Texas Electrical Reliability Council shut down generators during the storm so they wouldn’t blow out
- Now the Texas Congress wants to ask “tough questions” of whoever is responsible for that winter crisis
Texas without light. Texas was minutes, maybe seconds, from run out of power not just for several days, but for several months after the snowfall.
Bill Magness, President of the Texas Electrical Reliability Council (ERCOT, for its acronym in English), accepted that the tragedy could be much worse during the brutal cold storm that hit the state for several days.
Magness explained in a press conference that ERCOT engineers suddenly cut off the power on Monday, February 15, 2021, to prevent the distribution transformers from overloading.
For several days as the snow hit Texas, from Monday 15 to Thursday 18, at least four million people were without power to heat their homes in the face of the brutal cold wave.
Criticism in Texas has come against ERCOT from various quarters to point out that the organization, licensed under the state government to operate energy, was not prepared to handle the crisis.
However, Magness defended the decision of its engineers and assured that while several blackouts were accidental, those that were caused were carried out to avoid an “indeterminately long” crisis, he explained.
Magness said the power-conserving measure prevented transformers from collapsing in a matter of minutes, which would have caused blackouts “that would have occurred for months” until equipment was replaced.
Bill Magness’s explanation comes as the state recovers little by little, and with great pain, from one of the great and historical tragedies due to the brutal snowfall that left dozens dead and many from freezing.
In Texas political, civic and human rights circles, dozens of voices are raised to demand that ERCOT and Governor Greg Abbott explain why the state was not ready to prevent tragedy.