Tens of thousands of people across North Texas remain without power for a third day in wake of Sunday’s severe storms.
As of Tuesday afternoon, more than 50,000 customers were still without power, with most of those affected in Dallas County. Crews continue to work day and night to restore power. Oncor believes the “vast majority” of customers will get their power restored by the end of Wednesday, but some won’t get power back until Thursday.
Oncor has called in extra help as more than 2,500 additional workers will join the restoration efforts on Tuesday from other states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina and South Carolina.
Across East Dallas, commerce has been cut out without electricity. Clothes can’t be washed, gas can’t be bought and small businesses have been shut down as well as businesses that families depend on.
“We’re Cane Rosso. We’re a restaurant that serves Neapolitan-style pizza,” Todd Gorton explained. “With the power out in the Lakewood area, thieves got in making off with the restaurants safe. They definitely knew the area was without power and the police were busy doing other things, and they took advantage of that.”
“What they’re doing is essentially going block by block neighborhood by neighborhood clearing out the debris and really focusing on the reconstruction work,” explained Kerri Dunn with Oncor. “We know this is difficult and challenging and they’ve been without power for a while. But these crews and our guys have been working non-stop day and night to get the power back on.
Oncor crews and contracted workers spent Monday repairing lines and restoring power to about 140,000 homes. At the peak of Sunday afternoon’s storm, an estimated 350,000 homes and businesses were without electricity.
Some people without power are now staying with friends and family or in a hotel if they can find an available room. Others are staying home and toughing it out.
For some like Wilma Mosley who lives on a fixed income, reconnection can't come soon enough. She's nearly out of food.
“I don't get no food stamps, but I get SSI,” she said. “Now, I have to throw all of my food away and wait until next month to get food because I got no churches in our neighborhood that are helping us at all.”
Scott Strong is among those who brought chargers and devices to White Rock Coffee Tuesday to work remotely. Not only are people looking for places to work, but they’re also still trying to find places to stay.
“Last night, no hotels anywhere and we have a dog,” said Marianna Hogue. “My niece lives in Lakewood and they have electricity. So we stayed in their garage apartment with our dog.”
Dallas officials said their priority is getting traffic lights up and running. They ask residents to call 311 to report outages or downed trees. Officials say 41 percent of all traffic signals are affected. About 500 of them have no communication and need repair. More than 150 flashing red lights need to be reset.
The storm was deadly, killing one person when a crane collapsed onto a midrise apartment building near downtown Dallas. Several other people were hospitalized due to injuries.
Dallas ISD canceled summer events at campuses for a second day on Tuesday due to the widespread outages. Camps, classes and the summer breakfast and lunch programs were all canceled, but summer high school classes were set to operate as usual.
Richardson ISD canceled all summer school programs Tuesday because of the same issues, but summer program staff should report to work. Camps and clinics were operating on a normal schedule, except at Forest Meadow Junior High and Spring Creek Elementary.