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(Kyndel Bennett)

Austinites are experiencing hours-long power outages in all parts of the city as Austin Energy conducts rotating blackouts, after an abundance of energy was being used across the state to combat the winter storm. Power outages began early Monday morning and were expected for 40 minutes or less, but many residents have reported going without power for longer.

"People don't have power because there is not power to send them," Austin Mayor Steve Adler told CBS Austin on Monday morning. "Everyone needs to conserve power."

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas says rolling outages are necessary to curb energy demand. Austin energy reports that 195,996 customers—or about 38.25%—are without power, with 298 active outages, as of 9:27 a.m. For a full map of outages, click here.

"Electric load must be reduced in order to fully restore service across the (state's power) grid," Austin Energy tweeted at 7:15 a.m. The utility is asking customers who still have power to help the grid by conserving energy, such as by:

  • Turning down thermostats to 68 degrees or lower
  • Open blinds and shades to take advantage of the sun's natural heat during the day
  • Turn off and unplug non-essential lights and appliances
  • Avoid using large appliances, such as ovens and washing machines

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