HARLINGEN, Texas – More people died in the big Texas freeze of February 2021 than died at the Alamo, says state Senate District 27 candidate Salomon Torres.

Torres said that if elected, he would push to see Texas connected to the national electricity grid, so that the state does not suffer such a catastrophe again. 

“The official count for those who died in the big freeze of a year ago is in the 240 range. That is the official count. The unofficial count is much higher than that,” Torres said.

“Roughly, you are looking at over 500 people that died, unofficially, due to the freeze and the health complications that happened because of that.”

Torres, a Texas history buff, offered a comparison.

“At the Alamo you had approximately anywhere between 189 and 250 that died. So, if you take an average, you definitely had more die from the freeze than died at the Alamo.”

Torres said the Wall Street Journal ran a “thorough and detailed story” about the nation’s electric grid on Feb. 18. It was titled, “America’s Power Grid is Increasingly Unreliable.”

The story said the U.S. electrical system is becoming less dependable and that the problem is likely to get worse before it gets better. “Large, sustained outages have occurred with increasing frequency in the U.S. over the past two decades, according to a Wall Street Journal review of federal data. In 2000, there were fewer than two dozen major disruptions, the data shows. In 2020, the number surpassed 180.”

Torres said he has been reviewing data on the quality of the electric system, both in Texas and the U.S. 

“There are issues regarding the reliability of the our electric grid around the country. This is relevant for Texas, in that as a state senator I’m going to encourage that Texas revisit the issue of being disconnected from the other electric grids that surround Texas,” Torres said.

“Other states rely on relationships with other regions in order to fill the gaps when there are shortages in electricity. Right now, Texas is like the Lone Ranger. We are on our own. We do not connect with anybody else and to me, as a candidate for the Texas, Senate, that is a big strategic error.”

Torres added: “It is surprising but it is a fact that more Texans died last year as a result of the Texas Freeze than died at the Alamo in 1836. We are approaching, next month, the anniversary of the War of Independence and it is appalling to think that a natural cause like a freeze could devastate an entire state and cause deaths throughout the state of Texas, even though we were warned, ten years ago, that this would happen. Our state still failed to act. I am going to encourage revisiting the overall structure of how Texas is and is not connected is to the other electric grids in the U.S.”

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Editor’s Note: The Rio Grande Guardian recently interviewed Salomon Torres on Facebook as part of its Meet the Candidate series. Here is the interview:

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