Extreme Weather Subsides, Ice Melts, Power Lines Still Down

Extreme Weather Subsides, Ice Melts, Power Lines Still Down

By Julia Deng
NewsWest 9

STANTON - Extreme winter weather conditions subsided throughout the Basin by Sunday but power outages continued disrupting thousands of West Texas residences.

Stanton appeared to be one of the hardest hit areas, according to residents who complained of gasoline shortages and broken water lines, in addition to power outages.

"It's been terrible," Sonya Martinez, who lives near Oak Street and St. Anna, said. "We've been out of electricity for two days now."

Their home is one of 72 ONCOR powered residences in Stanton residences currently without electricity.

"We have had a widespread power outage throughout the [West Texas] service area for ONCOR," Company Representative, Sue Mercer, said. "More than 350 poles in the area have been identified to be in need of replacement. The number of customers without power in the West Texas District of ONCOR which spans from Nolan County to Culberson County at any one time during the storm period has reached to greater than 28,000."

ONCOR aims to restore power for all residential customers in Sweetwater, Snyder, Big Spring, Stanton, Midland, Odessa, Andrews and Monahans before Monday morning, according to Mercer.

"The goal for most remaining accounts to have power restored is by midnight Tuesday," she told NewsWest 9. "However, as ongoing assessment of the distribution power system continues additional poles and wire down situations have been identified that could impact the completion time."

Martinez said the lack of heat and refrigerated food were "really hard" on her daughter.

"She's four months old and we were all freezing in the dark," she said. "We had to get the candles going and we [ultimately] took her to stay at my brother-in-law's."

In addition to electrical outages, Stanton residents said they had been "stranded without gas" since the cold front hit last week.

"We only have a few gas stations and Stripes [Convenience Store] is out," Jeremy Ortega said Sunday afternoon. "Franklin's is closed and Shell isn't taking cash."

Ortega said he had been driving 18 miles, each way, to get gas in Midland.

Stripes Convenience Store representatives were not available for comment. It's unclear what caused the reported gas shortage in Stanton and whether or not it was weather related.

"It was really rough the past two days," Stanton resident, Zachary Hernandez, said. "But I've been through this before. Where there's a will, there's a way."