(San Antonio, TX) – February 12, 2021- The CPS Energy service territory is experiencing extreme cold weather with an increasing chance for freezing rain and sleet according to the National Weather Service. Heading into the weekend, bitterly cold air will spill into the region, with temperatures plummeting to a hard freeze Sunday evening and not returning to above freezing for most areas until Tuesday afternoon. Aligned to CPS Energy’s Guiding Pillars of Reliability and Customer Affordability, CPS Energy is asking the community to take steps now and through the weekend to reduce energy use for both electric and natural gas services.
“The citizens of the Greater San Antonio community are great partners when it comes to conserving energy. It is now time for us to band together even more,” said Paula Gold-Williams, President & CEO of CPS Energy. “Focused efforts of San Antonians doing their part to reduce their use of electric and natural gas energy will help our community better get through this period and keep their bills affordable.”
In the coming days, CPS Energy will initiate residential and commercial Demand Response events to help conserve energy. These will work the same as summer energy reduction events and are voluntary for customers once initiated.
Record energy use throughout the state is expected throughout the weekend and into early next week as reported by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) who manages the state’s electric grid. At this time, ERCOT has not declared an energy emergency, and there are no rotating outages. Consumers can monitor real time grid conditions by downloading the ERCOT mobile app and/or following the grid operator on Twitter (@ERCOT_ISO).
CPS Energy is monitoring the weather and temperature, and crews are prepared to respond to any reports of power outages. Currently, there are 4 active outages impacting 47 customers. Causes of these current outages vary. CPS Energy teams are on standby to respond to all reports of power outages and natural gas emergencies throughout the service territory. Customers can stay up-to-date on the utility’s Facebook and Twitter pages and can also monitor power outages and report them on the Outage Map.
“We encourage our customers to stay home and off the roads if at all possible, especially if our community experiences freezing rain and sleet, which will keep us all safe and also allow first responders across the community to do their jobs responding to emergencies, including our electric and natural gas field personnel,” said Rudy Garza, Chief Customer Engagement Officer of CPS Energy.
CPS Energy is also urging customers to practice a variety of safety tips in and around their home as the colder weather approaches. While a portable generator can be a source of secondary power, never operate a generator in an enclosed or partially enclosed space. Some additional safety tips for generators include:
- DO use carbon monoxide detectors in areas near the generator to monitor levels
- DO TURN OFF all appliances powered by the generator before shutting down the generator itself
- DO plug the generator into a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) to help prevent electrocutions and electrical shock injuries
- DO make sure your generator is properly grounded
- DO make sure extension cords used with generators are rated for the load and are in good condition
- DO NOT connect generators directly to household wiring without an appropriate transfer switch installed
- DO NOT overload the generator
CPS Energy also provides the following safety tips associated with natural gas.
- Never use a stove/oven as a space heater. Using the stove or range to heat your home can produce dangerous carbon monoxide gas.
- Test smoke alarms to verify they are working in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every floor.
- Test or install carbon monoxide alarms in a central location outside sleeping areas.
- Keep flammable liquids and spray cans at least three feet from heating equipment.
- When using a natural gas space heater, leave a window open a couple of inches for proper ventilation.
- Have your natural gas appliances serviced and repaired by professionals. Keep areas around your gas water heater or furnace clean, uncluttered, and free of flammable materials.
- If you smell a strong odor that smells like rotteneggs,get out of the house immediately. Don’t turn any electrical switches on or off. Don’t use a flashlight or the telephone. An electric spark from any electric or battery-powered device, or even from static electricity, could ignite a gas leak and cause an explosion. Call (210) 353-4357 (HELP) from a neighbor’s house as soon as possible. Never try to locate the source of a gas leak yourself.
For more safety tips, please visit cpsenergy.com/safety.
Established in 1860, CPS Energy is the nation’s largest public power, natural gas, and electric company, providing safe, reliable, and competitively-priced service to 860,934 electric and 358,495 natural gas customers in San Antonio and portions of seven adjoining counties. Our customers’ combined energy bills rank among the lowest of the nation’s 20 largest cities – while generating $8 billion in revenue for the City of San Antonio for more than seven decades. As a trusted and strong community partner, we continuously focus on job creation, economic development, and educational investment. True to our People First philosophy, we are powered by our skilled workforce, whose commitment to the community is demonstrated through our employees’ volunteerism in giving back to our city and programs aimed at bringing value to our customers. CPS Energy is among the top public power wind energy buyers in the nation and number one in Texas for solar generation.