ERCOT: Rolling Home Outages Possible on Thursday - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

ERCOT: Rolling Home Outages Possible on Thursday

Staff Report
NewsWest 9 & The Associated Press

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - The electric grid operator for Texas says there is a "high probability" of rotating residential outages as power demand statewide struggles to keep pace with record triple-digit highs.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas on Thursday escalated the warning quickly as power demand surged. Large industrial customers were already being paid to temporarily drop off the grid to conserve power for the rest of the state.

ERCOT spokeswoman Dottie Roark says Texas hasn't seen rolling summer outages since 2006.

ERCOT said rolling residential outages typically last 15 to 45 minutes. It's up to each electric provider to decide how the outages will be implemented.

Roark says the potential for outages was exacerbated Thursday by more generators being out of service.

Some conservation tips include:

  • Turn off all unnecessary lights, appliances, and electronic equipment.
  • When at home, close blinds and drapes that get direct sun, set air conditioning thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, and use fans in occupied rooms to feel cooler.
  • When away from home, set air conditioning thermostats to 85 degrees and turn all fans off before you leave. Block the sun by closing blinds or drapes on windows that will get direct sun.
  • Do not use your dishwasher, laundry equipment, hair dryers, coffee makers, or other home appliances during the peak hours of 3 to 7 p.m.
  • Avoid opening refrigerators or freezers more than necessary.
  • Use microwaves for cooking instead of an electric range or oven.
  • Set your pool pump to run in the early morning or evening instead of the afternoon.
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