AUSTIN (KXAN) – Amid very low temperatures, several natural gas customers in Central Texas reported low or no gas pressure Friday morning.
Atmos Energy has also issued a conservation alert.
Many people in KXAN’s viewing area have sent in emails stating that they are experiencing low or no gas pressure, leaving them without heating and other necessities in their home.
“ATMOS gas is currently having a ‘cut out’ and seems to be over a lot of space. Gas line pressure is insufficient for most furnace heaters and as a result it doesn’t work.” So while gas runs in stoves, it won’t work with pressure sensitive furnace heaters. No idea of actual wait times but it has been held for over 70 minutes on the ATMOS emergency line with no response.”
Atmos chirp Friday morning, the customer service line is closed for the day and on Monday due to the holiday. The tweet also said that if customers smell gas, they should leave the area and call 911 and Atmos’ 24/7 emergency line at (866) 322-8667. On Friday afternoon, the Texas Railroad Commission, which regulates oil and gas in the state, said the Atmos call center is open and has more help responding to customers.
KXAN reached out to Atmos Friday morning to inquire about reports of a gas service outage in the Austin-Round Rock area. The company responded that it was asking customers to maintain it due to extreme temperatures and high natural gas use but did not specifically address the outage reports.
An Atmos spokesperson also said that the company is seeing a high volume of calls and there may be a significant wait time for customers who want to speak with an agent.
Atmos said that if it’s not an emergency, or if you’re calling about a previous order situation, it “works as quickly as possible to get a service technician to their home.”
If it is an emergency, stay on hold to speak with an agent.
The Railroad Commission stated that it is “aware of some local low pressure issues due to very high demand in the areas served by Atmos Energy, Mid-Tex Division.”
The Railway Commission said Atmos has been working to increase system pressure and customer response.
Atmos Mid-Tex reported that there are no overall gas supply issues in the system at this time. UNHCR remains in close contact with Atmos and will provide updates as soon as we have them.”
NBC 5 in Dallas also reported a conservation alert, and a newspaper in Plainview said Atmos employees are investigating outages that occurred in the area Thursday.
natural gas throughout the state
The Texas Oil and Gas Association said in a statement Friday morning that Texas natural gas pipelines “indicate good pressure and plenty of storage even with some dips in production.” TXOGA is the statewide trade association for industry.
She added that she expects some declines in production and that has happened, but there are no major problems. There are a few power issues that are “resolved quickly,” the Public Utilities Commission and the Texas Electricity Reliability Board have reported. In 2022, she indicated, all aspects of the natural gas operation in Texas are poised to increase production and storage, and many have taken steps to further weathering.
How do you keep off gas?
Atmos Energy shared the following tips:
- Do not use your natural gas stove.
- Lower the thermostat to at least 68 degrees. Consider wearing extra layers of clothing and lowering your thermostat.
- Companies should reduce energy use as much as possible.
- Turn your water heater down to 120 degrees, because it can account for up to 25 percent of the energy used in your home.
- Unplug electronics and turn off lights that are not in use. By saving electricity, you are also helping to conserve energy-conserving natural gas.
- Minimize bath time and avoid showering. Showers account for about 40 percent of the hot water use in your home.
- Refrain from using large appliances such as the washer, dryer, oven and dishwasher for the next few days. When in use, minimize the opening of the oven door to prevent energy waste.
- If you have a pool, don’t use a pool heater. Instead, run the pool pump during the coldest part of the day to circulate the water and prevent freezing.
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