Dan Rather slammed Texas’ response to the recent winter storms that have paralyzed the state. The former newsman lives in Austin and has tweeted several times in the past days decrying the Lone Star State’s handling of the crisis.
Millions of Texans were without power following historic winter storms and freezing cold temperatures throughout the week. The state has failed to keep its overwhelmed power grid working as people try to stay warm. The state system is so deluged that officials have had to initiate rolling blackouts to handle the load.
Rather called out Texas officials for their inability to help citizens who are struggling to stay warm.
“Apparently America can put a man on the moon but Texas can’t keep the lights on. Houston, we have a problem,” he tweeted.
Texas Facing Power Outages
Dan Rather and his wife were without power earlier in the week and struggled to manage with the cold. He’s written several times about some of the problems they’ve faced during the storms.
“The situation is dire in Austin,” he tweeted Tuesday. “We’re without power and heat with no end in sight amidst frigid temperatures. My wife and I still have running water. Others have had pipes break. There needs to be accountability for what happened. Right now the priority is to keep people safe.”
The storms are being blamed for more than 30 deaths so far, including several in the Houston area. A family of four died after their home lost power and they had to use a fireplace to keep warm. A mother and daughter were also killed after they used their car for warmth in a closed garage. Two men believed to be homeless froze to death next to a Texas highway earlier this week. Others have died in Kentucky, Louisiana, and Missouri, from the cold, from carbon monoxide poisoning while trying to stay warm, or from car wrecks, the New York Times said.
Texas Also Has A Water Problem On Its Hands
Along with the issues with the power grid, Texas is now also struggling to get fresh water to people. The cold weather is freezing pipes and causing ruptures across the system, Gov. Greg Abbott said.
Texas officials told a quarter of the population, about 7 million people, to boil their tap water before drinking it, the New York Post said. Some hospitals were forced to remove waste from toilets with trash bags and refrain from washing their hands or showering. That is especially problematic with the coronavirus pandemic still a major problem at hospitals across the country.
The state may soon get a reprieve, however, as meteorologists say the worst of the storm is over.
“The worst is over and things will be getting better through the weekend,” Dan Petersen, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service told the Post.