Over 2.7 million people across Texas are currently without power as the majority of the state faces single-digit temperatures and sub-zero wind chill, according to the national utility tracker poweroutage.us.
The big picture: Large swaths of the country, including the southeast up through the central U.S., under a winter storm warning, according to the National Weather Service. Freezing temperatures in Texas are historic and haven't been seen in decades, according to experts and the state department of transportation.
What's happening: The Electric Reliability Council of Texas announced after 1 a.m. on Monday that it would begin rotating outages due to extreme weather to take generators offline.
- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued a disaster declaration on Feb. 12, saying that the prolonged freezing temperatures, sleet, and heavy snow could lead to deaths, injury, and damaged property.
- There are reports of road closures throughout the state, including in Houston and San Antonio, with freezing temperatures expected for at least the next day.
"The barrage of storminess and extreme cold can be traced back to an early January disruption of the polar vortex, which allowed lobes of extreme cold to ebb south over North America, Europe and Asia," the Washington Post's Capital Weather Gang reports.