In Texas, hospitals spent the week grappling with burst pipes, power outages and acute water shortages, making it difficult to care for patients.
In Abilene, authorities said a man died at the Hendrick Medical Center after he was unable to get dialysis treatment at the site. Large amounts of filtered water, in addition to electricity and heat, are required to properly provide care for dialysis patients, and water at the hospital was shut down, said Cande Flores, the Abilene fire chief.
Chief Flores said that at least four people had died in Abilene as a result of the state power grid failure, including a homeless man who died from exposure to the cold, a 60-year-old man who was found dead in his home and an 86-year-old woman whose daughter found her frozen in her backyard.
Elsewhere in the state, a 69-year-old man was found dead inside his home in a rural community south of San Antonio, where he lived alone. He did not have electricity, and the authorities said his bedroom was 35 degrees when they found him.
In Houston, an Ethiopian immigrant died in her idling car, which was parked in her garage, where she sat while charging her phone. She was talking to a friend when she started to feel tired.
She tried to drink water, said Negash Desta, a relative by marriage to Etenesh Mersha, who died. After she told her friend she couldnt talk anymore, there was no response after that.
Etenesh Mersha and her daughter Rakeb Shalemu.Credit…via Negash Desta