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Wicked Winter Weather Shuts Down Coastal Bend

Entrance ramps to the Harbor Bridge were closed as of Sunday afternoon and will not reopen until weather conditions improve, possibly on Thursday, Feb. 18. Screen capture image

Coastal Bend residents are asked to limit use of electricity during severe winter weather conditions which descended on the state on Friday, Feb. 12 and is expected to continue until Thursday, Feb. 18. Rolling brown and black outs may occur as temperatures continue to drop, said AEP Texas, the area’s largest electricity provider.

Also, Nueces County Judge Barbara Canales issued a disaster declaration, Corpus Christi Mayor Paulette Guajardo set up a plan to help the homeless find shelter, and City Manager Peter Zanoni announced the opening of the city’s Emergency Operations Center to monitor the weather.

On Sunday, Feb. 14, the Corpus Christi International Airport closed its runways to air traffic until further notice.

ROLLING OUTAGES POSSIBLE

AEP Texas is on the Electric Reliability Council of Texas grid, which is experiencing increased energy demands that are stressing the system.

Rolling power outages may be necessary to prevent large-scale outages and prevent long-term damage to the electric system , announced ERCOT in a plea to Texans to lower their thermostats to 68. Other suggestions are to limit use of large appliances like dishwashers, washers, and dryers.

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT PLANS

A county disaster declaration of no more than seven days from Feb. 12-18. was issued in conjunction with Gov. Greg Abbott’s statewide disaster declaration. The move activates the County Emergency Management Plan.

Sleet and freezing rain has closed businesses, schools, government offices, airport runways, roads, and bridges over the weekend with more forecast later this week.

Closed until further notice are:

  • Harbor Bridge
  • JFK Causeway Bridge
  • Oso Bridge at SH 358
  • Joe Fulton Corridor Ramp from Carbon Plant Road
  • SH 358 (SPID) from IH 37 to the Island
  • SH 286 from SPID to IH 37

The EOC team urges everyone in the area to:

  • Be aware of roadway conditions and to stay off roadways when possible.
  • Plan your route as back roads may be more dangerous than major roadways.
  • Expect delays and plan accordingly.
  • Accelerate and decelerate slowly.

HELP FOR THE HOMELESS

The Salvation Army is operating as the lead agency in an attempt to provide shelter, food, blankets, and clothing to the city’s homeless population. City staff is working with the Salvation Army and other local homeless agencies to reach out to the homeless community and inform them of the resources available to keep them safe during the recent cold snap.

Donations of blankets and jackets can be left at the Salvation Army at 521 Josephine Street. Shelters around the city are expanding their intakes to bring in people off the streets and offer them food and shelter.

AIRPORT CANCELLATIONS

Runways were closed on Valentine’s Day due to icy conditions, but the commercial airlines serving the airport had already canceled most of their flights for late Sunday through Monday. Runways will be closed until weather conditions improve. The terminal remains open for customer service or tenant assistance.

SCHOOLS

Several schools closed while others went to 100 percent remote learning for Monday and Tuesday, Feb. 15-16. Check your individual school districts for information.

MORE INFORMATION

For the latest information, visit the city’s Inclement Weather Planning web page.

CONTACT NUMBERS

DIAL 911 FOR EMERGENCIES

AEP Electrical Hazards or General Calls: 877-373-4858

AEP Outages: 866-223-8508

City Call Center: 361-826-2489

Report Animal Neglect: 361-826-2489 or 361-886-2600

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