At 1:25 Monday morning, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) directed transmission and distribution companies to begin controlled rotating outages as an emergency procedure to avoid a sustained large-scale outage and prevent long-term damage to the electric system.
AEP Texas began rotating the areas affected so that consumers are impacted for a limited amount of time — typically 30 minutes to an hour. The amount of time required to restore service could be delayed in some cases due to system and weather conditions.
- If you lose power, turn off your heating, and large appliances to enable smoother service restoration. Once power is restored, you should switch the devices back on gradually over the following 30-to-45 minutes. Taking this step will help prevent a sudden surge in demand after power is restored, which could cause a second outage.
- The controlled rotating outages are anticipated to continue for over the next 24 hours although this initial projection could change.
Energy conservation measures are urgently needed now through Tuesday to help prevent an ERCOT directive to interrupt power. Steps to help reduce electricity use include:
- Turn the thermostat down 2 to 3 degrees during the peak hours of 2-to-8 p.m.
- Set programmable thermostats to lower temperatures when no one is home.
- Limit use of large appliances (i.e., dishwasher, washer, dryer, etc.) to morning or after 8 p.m.
- If you cook indoors from 2-to-8 p.m., use a microwave or slow cooker.
- Close blinds and drapes during late afternoon.