With emergency dispatchers "almost continuously" answering phone call after phone call, the Austin Fire Department has already responded to over 100 reports of broken pipes since midnight amid extreme winter weather. Yesterday, there were over 600 reports for broken pipes.
At 9:30 PM we are up to 582 Broken Water Pipe calls since midnight. Over 500 are since noon. We are attempting to respond to as many as we can amongst other priority calls. Dispatchers are almost continuously answering additional calls.
— Austin Fire Info (@AustinFireInfo) February 16, 2021
As some Austinites are entering two days without power, AFD has extra crews and vehicles responding to calls ranging from broken pipes, fires and carbon monoxide exposure. With calls rolling in, the fire department told Austonia no one was available for comment on the situation.
In unprecedented weather for Texas, Austin Fire Division Chief Thayer Smith told KVUE that he believes the extreme cold is causing pipes to break sooner than expected and they anticipate even more calls as the weather warms and water thaws.
Austinites all over the city are dealing with broken pipes, and rumors are circulating that with hundreds of reports piling up, help could be hours away—if it comes same-day at all
Shout out to the person from Austin Water who came to our house at 2am to shut off our water and save our pipes (broken pipe pic for reason). Energy, water, and emergency workers are exhausted heroes. pic.twitter.com/rgm0xgw6GV
— Liz Bronson (@Lizbconsult) February 16, 2021
It seems that it could be a broken pipe
If there's a change in sprinkler water pressure, it can trigger the alarm
— sad girl memes (@frutsnackduty) February 16, 2021
According to Daniel's Plumbing, if your water starts to smell foul, looks discolored, begins leaking onto the floor, or water pressure begins fluctuating, you may have a broken pipe. Simultaneously, if you live in an apartment building and begin to hear a fire alarm without smoke in your unit, one of your neighbors' pipes may have burst.
In the event of a pipe burst, call maintenance and locate your water valve to turn it off immediately. If your home or apartment is flooding, unplug everything in sight and cover your valuables.
As Austinites grapple with power outages and breaking pipes, AFD has also received calls of gas exposure where people are using gas stoves or charcoal to heat their homes, resulting in toxic carbon monoxide gas. AFD has responded to two calls today.
AFD units with @ATCEMS have responded to 4 Toxic Exposure calls since 6 pm where residents were using charcoal in the home to stay warm. This is extremely dangerous and can quickly lead to death from CO poisoning.
— Austin Fire Info (@AustinFireInfo) February 16, 2021
Using charcoal or gas stoves inside your home is extremely dangerous, not advised and can result in death. To avoid broken pipes, residents are advised to drip water from faucets and check on pipes.
EMERGENCY OUTAGE UPDATE at 12:30 p.m.:
While @ERCOT_ISO says conditions are improving, we want customers to know this a dynamic situation + conditions are changing throughout the day.
⚡Customers should be prepared to not have power through Tuesday night and possibly longer. 1/4
— Austin Energy (@austinenergy) February 16, 2021
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Elon Musk has placed an order for a new, top-of-the-line private jet: a Gulfstream G700, Austonia has learned. Delivery is expected in early 2023.
Billed as offering “the most spacious cabin in history,” the aircraft seats 19 and soars above the rest of us at up to 51,000 feet. Base price: $78 million.
The Gulfstream G700 was awarded the 2022 International Yacht & Aviation Award for excellence in cabin design this year. (Gulfstream)
According to the Gulfstream website, the G700 can fly up to 7,500 nautical miles without refueling, enough range to fly nonstop from Austin to Hong Kong. Powered by two Rolls-Royce engines, it has its own Wi-Fi system, 20 oval windows measuring 28” x 21”, and two lavatories.
The sweet new ride will replace his current top-of-line private jet: a 2015 Gulfstream G650, the aircraft that has been made somewhat famous by the automated @elonjet Twitter account, which tracks and reports his personal aircraft’s movements using public data.
Landed in Austin, Texas, US. Apx. flt. time 44 Mins. pic.twitter.com/jZ7HI0i4iV
— ElonJet (@ElonJet) June 24, 2022
Musk has repeatedly championed “free speech” as a guiding ethic in his planned purchase of Twitter. Last December, Musk offered the teenager who built the @elonjet tracker $50,000 to shut it down, citing security concerns. It’s still up.
According to the @elonjet account, Musk’s jet last traveled to Austin, where it’s been since June 23. The associated data says that his flight to Austin burned $2,573 worth of aviation fuel and discharged 4 tons of carbon dioxide.
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