FACT CHECK: Did CPS Energy Release This Statement About The Power Grid?

Trevor Schakohl | Fact Check Reporter

A post shared on Facebook purportedly shows a statement from CPS Energy about the state of the power grid in Texas.

Verdict: False

There is no record of CPS Energy putting out the statement. The company has refuted the attribution.

Fact Check:

Texas was hit with a severe winter storm last week that left millions without power and water. 18,000 customers in state still lacked power on Monday, USA Today reported. (RELATED: Is FEMA Paying For Hotel Rooms In Texas?)

Amid the deadly winter storm, Facebook users shared a statement about the power grid that they attributed to CPS Energy. The company serves customers in and around San Antonio, according to its website.

“The State has issued critical electric load warning. Grid is about to fail. Prepare!” reads the alleged statement. “Water will go out as well so fill tubs etc as needed. At this time CPS Energy is no longer able to protect even critical infrastructure, such as hospitals, from some level of brownouts.”

The message, purportedly from CPS Energy, goes on to tell people to “reduce your thermostats to a maximum of 62 degrees” and say that the company has “no certainty or ability to predict duration or frequency of outages during this critical stage,” among other things.

While the company has made numerous statements about the power grid during the mid-February winter storm, this isn’t one of them. Check Your Fact didn’t find the message in press releases on CPS Energy’s website or in posts on its social media pages. Instead, the company shared statements on its Facebook and Twitter accounts that said the message “DID NOT come from CPS Energy.”

John Moreno, a spokesperson for CPS Energy, also confirmed to Check Your Fact via email: “This was not an official CPS Energy statement.” (RELATED: Is FEMA Paying For Hotel Rooms In Texas?)

CPS Energy did issue a statement on Feb. 15 saying that there was “not enough electric generation available across the state to keep up with customer demand throughout the system.” The statement further asked customers to reduce electricity consumption by taking measures such as turning thermostats down to 68 degrees or lower, unplugging nonessential lights and appliances, and avoiding the use of large appliances.

The company tweeted on Feb. 18 that area hospitals were not experiencing blackouts. It also said in the afternoon of Feb. 20 that “there are now 131 customers experiencing an outage.”

Trevor Schakohl

Fact Check Reporter
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