Houston power outages: CenterPoint releases outage map; 1.3 million still without power after Hurricane Beryl

More than 1.3 million CenterPoint Energy customers were still without power Wednesday morning, nearly two days after Hurricane Beryl knocked out power to more than 2 million people.

So far, the company has restored power to more than 850,000 customers and is on track to restore power to at least 1 million customers by Wednesday.

CenterPoint released a map late Tuesday that shows the status of power restoration efforts in Houston. The map shows areas that currently have power, areas where assessment is underway and areas where circuits are scheduled for repair.

On Wednesday, the map highlighted streets in downtown Houston, West University Place and other downtown Houston neighborhoods that have been restored.

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However, the veracity of the map has been questioned by customers on social media. The map also does not include any timeline for when outages will be restored. Company officials say they are still finalizing the damage assessment and could not provide details on a timeline.

The company has faced sharp criticism for its handling of power outages and its communication with customers. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, asked if the company was ready, said he had asked for details about CenterPoint’s preparations.

“CenterPoint will have to answer for itself whether it was prepared and positioned. State was prepared and positioned. I’ll tell you whether I’m satisfied or not when I have the full report,” Patrick said Tuesday.

According to CenterPoint, the outages to date have been related to the company’s distribution system, which was designed to be locked down to prevent further damage.

Citing technical issues and an increase in website traffic, CenterPoint removed its original outage tracking map from the company’s website in May, after a deadly derecho knocked out power to nearly a million customers. Some Houstonians got creative this week after a social media user noticed that the Whataburger app could serve as a de facto outage map by showing which fast-food locations are open and which are closed in the aftermath of Hurricane Beryl.

RELATED: Whataburger Power: Houston-area residents hungry for break info turn to Whataburger app on the map

In a news release, CenterPoint said the company’s entire system performed as expected, despite Beryl “directly impacting most of the company’s 5,000-square-mile system, causing downed trees, branches and other debris that damaged utility poles and distribution wires.”

CenterPoint is assessing damage in southeast and northwest Houston, according to a power outage map.

“We have made significant progress and exceeded the number of times we have restored service to customers following Hurricane Ike, but there is still much important work ahead, especially in the hardest-hit areas where work will be more complex and time-consuming,” Lynnae Wilson, senior vice president of the electrical division, said in a statement.

“We know that many of our customers are counting on us to get the job done as safely and quickly as possible, and that will continue to be our top priority,” Wilson said.

Customers are sweating

Temperatures are forecast to soar to just over 32°C, meaning many Fort Bend residents will be without power for a third day.

Customers packed BlendIn Coffee Club in Sugar Land for a chance at Wi-Fi and air conditioning. For many, it was their third day without power after Beryl.

Natalie Weber


Houston Public Media

Customers packed BlendIn Coffee Club in Sugar Land for a chance at Wi-Fi and air conditioning. For many, it was their third day without power after Beryl.

At BlendIn Coffee Club in Sugar Land, customers packed the building for a chance at Wi-Fi and air conditioning, many working on laptops or scrolling through phones in an area where cell phone coverage came and went.

Katrina Bolman came to the cafe with her fiancé after she checked Instagram and saw the shop was open.

“(We’re) just trying to find a place where we can get some work done and get out of the heat,” she said.

Aaron Atkinson is the store’s general manager and said this is their first day open since the hurricane. Atkinson has been with the company since 2017 and has been through other storms.

“This is actually the longest we’ve been without power,” he said. “We’ve been able to keep power on through other storms before.”

Thousands of people across the county are still without power.

Natalie Weber assisted in the preparation of this report.