Hurricane Beryl Leaves 2.7M Customers Without Power
CenterPoint Energy, Entergy Texas Turn to Restoration Efforts
Garage crushed by a downed tree in Texas
Garage crushed by a downed tree in Texas | © RTO Insider LLC
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Hurricane Beryl ripped through the Houston area after making a landfall on the Texas Gulf Coast July 8 as a Category 1 storm, leaving a trail of death and destruction in its wake.

CONROE, Texas — Hurricane Beryl ripped through the Houston area after making landfall on the Texas Gulf Coast on July 8 as a Category 1 storm, leaving a trail of death and destruction in its wake. 

Downgraded to a tropical storm by late morning, Beryl’s high winds caused significant tree damage in the heavily wooded region of Texas. Cleanup and restoration are expected to take days during muggy conditions with near-term projected temperatures in the low to mid 90s. 

Falling trees killed at least two people and took down numerous power lines. As of 4 p.m. CT, more than 2.78 million Texas customers were without power, according to PowerOutage.us. 

CenterPoint Energy, the primary utility in Houston, accounted for more than 2.18 million customers without power; it has about 2.6 million overall. It said it had a restoration workforce of approximately 4,500 ready to assist in the efforts. 

Entergy Texas, with more than 247,000 customer outages, said its crews would begin a damage assessment throughout its 27-county service area once the storm passed. It has 500 additional restoration workers on standby to assist its crews. 

Beryl came ashore around 4 a.m. near Matagorda Bay south of Houston, packing 80 mph winds. It was downgraded to a strong tropical storm about six hours later, with maximum sustained winds of 70 mph. Winds were down to 45 mph as the storm continued north at 4 p.m. CT. 

The National Weather Service placed the Houston and Galveston metro areas under a flood watch through the morning hours of July 9. Rain and windy conditions were expected intermittently through early evening July 8. 

Both of Houston’s airports had ceased operations by noon July 8, but they restored traffic later in the day. 

ERCOT said on social media it was monitoring the storm and its aftermath. It said any outages are “local in nature and not an ERCOT grid reliability issue.” 

Beryl brought with it painful reminders for some residents of a derecho that hit the Houston area in May with wind gusts of more than 100 mph. The storm killed eight people, brought down trees, blew out windows in downtown skyscrapers and left some people without power for more than two weeks. 

Ironically, a Texas House State Affairs Committee scheduled for July 8 to conduct oversight of utility resilience plans was canceled because of the storm. 

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