Local authorities continue to advise citizens to boil water before consuming it, despite the fact that all power plants were back online over the weekend
CLIMATE | Houston Officials Say Water There Is Safe To Drink | PHOTO EFE / EPA / TANNEN MAURY)
Approximately 8.8 million residents of Texas, a third of the state’s population, continue to have problems with their drinking water supply.
Local authorities told the Reuters news agency that winter storms destroyed power plants last week.
They also continue to advise citizens to boil water before consuming it, despite the fact that all power plants were back online over the weekend and power was restored to most homes.
For their part, officials in Houston, the state’s largest city, said the water there was safe for consumption as of Sunday.
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“As of 7:00 am Central Time Monday, more than 1,200 public water systems have reported service interruptions due to weather, many of which have resulted in boil water advisories. This is affecting more than 8.8 million people, in 199 Texas counties, ”said a spokesman for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) in an emailed statement.
“A total of 147 PWS serving a population of just under 120,000 people are not operational. In addition, 8 PWS wastewater treatment plants have reported non-operational, ”the spokesperson said.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott said late Sunday that he had joined with the state Air Guard, the National Guard and the US military to distribute water.
“About 3.5 million bottles of water have been delivered,” he said on Twitter.
Last week winter storms caused widespread blackouts in Texas, a state where extreme cold is rare. As a result of this natural phenomenon, at least two dozen people died and more than 4 million were without electricity.
Abbott also noted that they are bringing in plumbers from other states to help repair broken pipes. Homeowners or renters who are uninsured can request a refund from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), he added.
For his part, President Joe Biden on Saturday approved a disaster declaration for Texas that makes federal funds available to people affected by the storms, including temporary housing and home repair assistance and low-cost loans.
With information from Reuters