Dallas mayor to push for changes to the Texas power grid

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson is upset that North Texas electric delivery company Oncor did not tell him about the extended power outages.

The mayor said Oncor’s CEO told him Saturday there might be rolling blackouts of 30 to 45 minutes.

He followed up with Oncor on Monday when it became clear the outages were not rolling and were lasting much longer.

"I personally feel upset and frustrated, and on some level, betrayed by those we depend on to keep the lights on," Johnson said.

RELATED: Controlled power outages in Texas end as leaders and lawmakers begin pointing fingers

Johnson said he’ll have tough questions for both Oncor and ERCOT, the agency that controls the state’s power grid, when the catastrophe is over.

"I was told there was no inequitable intent but we have to wait I guess until we are through with this to get more clarity about what exactly was being done and those decisions – if in fact they were decisions at all – were being made," he said.

Johnson believes change needs to be made because what’s been done obviously has not worked. Everything needs to be on the table including adding Texas back to the federal power grid, he said.

Johnson said that what Oncor said on Saturday, and what happened Sunday and Monday, were two very different things.

"What I was told Saturday by Oncor was we should expect rolling blackouts, possibly - they weren't sure they would need to do that - that wouldn't last more than 40-45 minutes. That has turned out to obviously not be the case," Johnson explained.

The mayor himself was among thousands who had long power outages, while others never lost power at all.

"My house, we lost power every day, for several hours, Monday, Tuesday, [Wednesday], was assured no intent for inequitable," he said.

The city recommends that people learn where their water shut off valve is, in the event a pipe breaks.

Click here for information on how to request emergency services in Dallas, and how to find your shutoff valve.

The fire department's call load has tripled this week, and resources are strained, so DFR is urging patience.

But they added that DFR will answer the call.

The director of Dallas Water Utilities advised people to prepare for the possible impact of water main breaks by storing water for drinking, cooking, and washing.

RELATED: Oncor defends decisions on who gets power, who doesn't in North Texas

The Kay Bailey Hutchison Center continues to be open as a warming center for those who remain without power.

So far, the mayor said about 1,000 homeless residents and about 70 residents without power have gone to the convention center for warmth.

Dallas also has 16 mobile warming stations across the city. Buses are parked outside rec centers and libraries.

RELATED: List of North Texas warming centers

"Many sleep overnight, or come to get food and water from buses," said Rocky Vaz, who is director of the city’s Office of Emergency Management.

Vaz admitted the city was not prepared for outages of this scale.

"We do have robust plans for evacuations and blackouts, but noting that covers the whole city," he said. "We will look at facilities and how to stand those up, something we will work on after this."

The city recommends that people learn where their water shut-off valve is in the event a pipe breaks.

LINK: How to find your shut-off valve