Xcel Energy ceases rolling outages for now, company continues on high alert

Updated: Feb. 16, 2021 at 6:39 PM CST
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Jeff Gulde is one of thousands of residents in Amarillo who lost their power this morning.

“I was getting ready for work, my wife had already gotten herself ready,” said Gulde. “She was working on a project on her computer, so when the power went off, she lost what she was working on.”

Xcel Energy was forced to initiate rolling outages yesterday due to low natural gas supplies that fuel power plants in the central parts of the country, including Xcel’s Texas and New Mexico power plants.

“Going to my moms house, driving up western, headed north, the lights were out at hillside and at I-27,” said Gulde.

Earlier today, Southwest Power Pool, which is in charge of the regional grid, downgraded its energy emergency alert to level 1 allowing companies like Xcel to cease the rotating outages.

“Customers have done a tremendous job,” said Wes Reeves, media relations representative at Xcel Energy. “We have actually seen the results of that conservation because we have kind of a normal curve that we can see and it begins to flatten out so we can see that customers are conserving.”

Although the situation is beginning to change, the Southwest Power Pool anticipates that the persistent cold weather and demand will keep the system fluctuating between emergency levels so they continue to urge consumers to conserve energy.

“It is still cold outside so we will continue to see some outages outside related to the extreme cold,” said Reeves.

According to Xcel, rolling outages are randomly selected.

There are certain circuits like if we have major hospitals and if we have critical loads like that we’re going to avoid,” said Reeves.

The company continues to have crews on stand by to attend unplanned outages.

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