CALL (800) 863-5312 TO SPEAK WITH BLACKOUT PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEYS IN TEXAS FOR FREE
Texas has recently experienced one of the worst blackouts the country has ever seen. The power failures caused widespread blackouts that affected millions of Texans. Many Texans experienced severe damage to their property while others suffered personal injuries.
The lawyers handling Texas blackout cases are prepared to assess damages during this recent disaster. If you have been harmed by the recent blackout, you may be entitled to compensation.
Power Grid Failure Causing Widespread Blackouts in Texas
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) and other various power companies throughout the state of Texas were unable to provide Texans with power during one of the coldest winters Texas has ever seen. Temperatures lowered into the single digits and when Texans lost power, thousands struggled to stay warm. This led to severe property damage as well as injuries and death.
Texas’ electrical grid has been analyzed for weaknesses since 1989 after a previous cold winter caused power outages and blackouts. In 2011, Texas lost power due to a drop in temperatures and was offered several recommendations by other power generators and transmission companies to avoid blackouts in the future. The recommendations were not mandatory, but because nothing was changed about the electric grid, Texans suffered another major blackout this year.
The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) performs regular assessments on the electrical generating capacity of states throughout the country. In 2019, their Summer Reliability Assessment report indicated that the ERCOT electrical grid had one of the lowest anticipated reserve margins in the United States. The report found that ERCOT was one of the only parts of the country that did not have sufficient resources available to meet anticipated peak electrical demands.
While blame cannot be placed on any one person or company, a combination of factors led to Texans suffering harm due to the blackout. Extremely cold or extremely hot weather conditions may overload any electric grid due to the increase in demand for power to either warm up or cool down homes. Because of thousands of people trying to utilize electricity at the same time, power grids can fail, causing widespread blackouts.
Getting Help After the Texas Blackout
Thousands of Texans suffered financial and personal losses due to the extreme weather and power failures this year. If you have suffered a loss due to the blackout, you should seek help from a Texas blackout personal injury lawyer immediately. Doing so may help preserve your claim and may allow you to recover faster.
There may be various claims available to you, depending on the harm suffered. Some will have extensive damage to their homes, businesses, or vehicles after being without power for so long. Others may have experienced personal injuries such as hypothermia, carbon monoxide poisoning, or wrongful death. No matter what harm you suffered, our blackout personal injury lawyers in Texas may be able to assist you.
Potential Injuries Resulting from the Prolonged Blackout
Hypothermia is caused by prolonged exposure to very cold temperatures. Texans became at risk for hypothermia during the blackout because temperatures were in the single digits and some Texans were without power for days at a time. Those most at risk for hypothermia are the elderly and infants. Inadequate heat, clothing, and food can put individuals at risk for hypothermia if the internal body temperature drops below 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that can kill you. It is found in the fumes produced by fuel, which can come from cars, stoves, fireplaces, or grills. If carbon monoxide builds up indoors, it can poison people and animals who breathe it in.
During the Texas blackout, people were so desperate for heat that some may have used charcoal grills inside or a car running in the garage to provide heat. These heat sources are extremely dangerous if not used with adequate ventilation because of the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Despite this risk, there were 80 reported cases of carbon monoxide poisoning during the last weeks of February 2021.
In an effort to create heat indoors, people may have been so desperate for warmth that fires were lit in enclosed spaces. In addition to the lack of heat, the blackout also caused there to be no source of light indoors during long winter days. If you or a loved one have suffered burns during the blackout, you may have a claim for damages.
Sadly, many Texans have lost their lives or the life of a loved one due to the blackouts. A wrongful death claim is a civil action that can attempt to compensate for the death of a family member that was caused by someone else. If the negligence of an electric company caused an individual to lose their life, then there may be a claim for wrongful death. A family member would have to bring the claim on behalf of their lost family member.
Some Texans experienced extensive property damage due to the blackout. This may have included frozen pipes that burst which caused flooding. Large appliances without electricity such as refrigerators may have had food spoilage. Businesses such as supermarkets may have suffered substantial losses to food spoilage as a result of the blackout.
There may be legal issues that involve insurance claims related to the blackout. Burst pipes that caused flooding may have damaged carpets, drywall, the foundation, and may cause black mold to form. Our lawyers may be able to help with insurance claims and seek compensation for these damages.
Who Is at Fault?
In such a large-scale natural disaster, it may be hard to determine who, if anyone, is at fault. While the state’s power grid failed to provide electricity to four million Texans, there may be other parties at fault. Electrical companies failed to warn the public about the risk of overloading the grid, but also failed to take precautions to avoid such a widespread blackout. During one of the coldest winters that Texas has ever seen, this created devastating and deadly outcomes.
Most legal claims for personal injury will be brought under the theory of negligence. Negligence is the main factor used to determine fault or accountability that results in an injury. The legal definition of negligence can only be determined by an experienced attorney.
To be successful in a negligence claim, there must have been a duty owed to you by someone else. The person or entity must have failed to exercise due care and must have breached this duty. The breach in duty must have caused you to suffer harm and there must be actual damages as a result. If all these elements are met, then you may be able to prove fault and may be able to recover damages.
What Damages Might Be Recoverable?
What damages might be recoverable depends on the type of harm suffered. Depending on the details of your claim, your injuries and damages from the blackout could vary. You may be able to receive economic or non-economic damages.
Economic damages are compensation you can receive because of monetary losses. This could include hospital bills, prescription medications, in-home care, rehabilitation costs, lost wages as a result of missing work due to your injuries, property damages to your home, and any other out-of-pocket expenses resulting from the blackout. If the life of a loved one was lost, you may be able to recover funeral expenses, medical expenses leading up to the death, loss of their future earnings if you were dependent on it, and legal costs in dealing with their estate.
Non-economic damages may include compensation for pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of consortium or companionship if a loved one was lost, and any other emotional distress caused by the blackout.
Why Hire a Texas Blackout Personal Injury Lawyer?
Hiring a Texas lawyer that is experienced in personal injury will be beneficial to your claim. A lawyer will be able to speak to insurance agencies on your behalf if necessary and can help negotiate settlements for you. The blackout may have caused you or your family extensive damages that may involve multiple claims.
The time limit for filing claims for personal injury in Texas is two years. The time limit for filing claims for damages to personal or real property is also two years. Therefore, it is important not to delay in contacting a lawyer immediately if you have suffered damages from the blackout.
Get Help from Texas Blackout Personal Injury Attorneys
At Zinda Law Group, our lawyers handling Texas blackout cases are prepared to evaluate your claims and may assist in recovering for any harm you may have experienced from the blackout. We have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you determine what to do next and to help recover the best possible outcome for your case.
Call us today at (800) 863-5312 for a free and confidential consultation with one of our Texas personal injury lawyers. You will pay nothing unless we win your case. That’s our No Win, No Fee Guarantee.
Meetings with attorneys by appointment only.