Thousands swelter without power in Lewisville

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by TERESA WOODARD

WFAA

Posted on June 26, 2012 at 10:55 PM

Temperatures in North Texas topped out at a blistering 106 degrees on Tuesday, and it was still in the mid-90s late into the evening.

Texas broke a power record for the second straight day as demand topped 65,000 megawatts between 2 and 3 p.m. ERCOT, the agency that maintains the state's power grid, expects power use will peak at more than 67,000 megawatts this summer.

Most of us are thankful we got to spend the day inside; but what if you couldn't because your power went out in the heat of the afternoon?

A transformer at a power substation failed on Tuesday afternoon, and for up to 5,000 Lewisville customers, that meant it was a very hot day.

At the Catalina Apartments, people spent the afternoon outside, where it was actually cooler than inside their apartments.

One family was planning to fire up a barbeque pit to make dinner in the parking lot.

In Fort Worth, emergency responders were busy answering heat-related calls. We found one ambulance crew helping a woman suffering from severe dehydration. She had been outside much of the day, but in the shade.

It was the second such case in the same area in just an hour.

"Everyone is at risk, whether you're active and healthy, you're still at risk for heat-related illness," said MedStar spokesman Roland Hernandez. "Avoid the heat if possible."

MedStar crews answered a total of seven heat-related calls on Tuesday.

Back in Lewisville, the lights — and, more importantly, the air conditioning — came back on around 8:30 p.m.

The power company said the heat wasn't to blame for the outage, but it's a reminder of what the summer could hold as the state's power grid is pushed to the limits.

The City of Lewisville offered its recreation center and library to homeowners who needed to cool off; others spent time in their air conditioned cars.

E-mail twoodard@wfaa.com

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