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Houston power outages: Hurricane Beryl plunges 2.2 million into the dark

A tree was blown into powerlines by Hurricane Beryl in a Cypress neighborhood.
Colleen DeGuzman
Houston Public Media
A tree was blown into powerlines by Hurricane Beryl in a Cypress neighborhood.
A tree was blown into powerlines by Hurricane Beryl in a Cypress neighborhood.

More than 2.2 million throughout the Houston region were without power Monday afternoon after Hurricane Beryl directly passed over the area.

That's more than double the 900,000-plus who lost power in May when a derecho unexpectedly hit the area. It took more than a week for those outages to be restored.

As of 2:30 p.m. Monday, CenterPoint Energy reported more than 6,300 different outages throughout its coverage zone.

“The storm veered off the originally expected course and more heavily impacted the company's customers, systems and infrastructure than previously anticipated,” CenterPoint said in a statement Monday afternoon.

The company said it would first need to complete a damage assessment before it could publicly release a timeline for restoring power. It said customers in the hardest hit areas should prepare to be without power for an extended period.

“We understand how difficult it is to be without power for any amount of time, especially in the heat. We are laser focused on the important and time-sensitive work that lies ahead,” said Lynnae Wilson, Senior Vice President, Electric Business at CenterPoint.

A signal light on Elgin on the University of Houston campus was destroyed during Hurricane Beryl.

The number of customers without power progressively ticked up during the morning as winds of more than 80 mph walloped the region. About 500,000 were without power by 6 a.m., and the number passed 1 million after 7 a.m.

RELATED: Beryl blows into Houston: Hurricane makes landfall as category one; two deaths reported

Customers wanting more detailed information on outages and restoration will have to do without the company's outages map. It was taken offline in the wake of the derecho and remained offline as Beryl hit.

CenterPoint claims it will bring in “an additional 10,000 resources from other utilities” to help restore power and have a dozen staging sites across the region.

CenterPoint asks customers to stay away from downed powerlines and report them instead to a hotline: 713-207-2222.

People without power do not need to report their outage to CenterPoint, the company said.

Beryl made landfall early Monday morning as a Category One storm near Matagorda. There have been two reported deaths due to the storm.

RELATED: Photos: Houston-area residents share photos of Hurricane Beryl flooding, damage

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Mark Norris