New Orleans-based Entergy Corp. has begun periodic power outages for customers in Texas, including far northern and eastern parts of the greater Houston area. Residents in four counties could be affected, including Montgomery, Chambers, Liberty, and Walker counties.
Reports indicate these brownouts are a result of damage done by Hurricane Laura to a transmission line in the Entergy service area. This damage has impacted Entergy’s power supply, forcing the company to limit the supply when demand is normally at its peak. Montgomery County Judge Mark Keough stated these brownouts could last for three days and will take place in the heat of the day when demand is highest.
In Montgomery County, Texas, Entergy is working to repair the transmission line which has caused outages in the area. The Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management explained they received an update from Entergy late Thursday evening explaining the current transmission line issue had been located and was in the process of being repaired.
Keough stated, “Right now they are working to reenergize transmission lines that if all goes well tonight should be up soon and will bring most of us out of the dark. They are continuing to power up a current shut down power plant that was shut down due to evacuation of the area. If these options come online tonight we should see power back on at some point tonight.”
According to Keough, the third option is to connect to the ERCOT grid. This route would be difficult and will remain a backup plan if all else fails.
The majority of the Houston area is covered by Houston-based CenterPoint Energy. As of yesterday, more than 99 percent of customers in CenterPoint’s service area still had power, according to the company’s Electric Outage Center.
Caitlin Ritchie is a writer within the energy and power industry. Born in Georgia, she attended the University of Georgia before earning her master’s in English at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.