Galveston residents work to recover after more than 80 hours without power

After 80 hours without power and five days with no running water, it felt like an eternity of below freezing temperatures.

Video Transcript

- What is heavily impacted by the deadly winter weather is Galveston. Action News reporter Jaclyn Lee is there with an update on the recovery effort.

JACLYN LEE: Well, there are still quite a few communities here in Galveston County that are on boil water notices. But officials say it's still a huge improvement from the last 24 hours. People we spoke with say it's been a mad dash for propane gas, fuel, and generators.

The power may be back in the city of Galveston.

- Oh, and then is on.

JACLYN LEE: But residents and visitors are recovering from more than 80 hours straight without power, five days with no running water, and what felt like an eternity of below-freezing temperatures.

KAREN FLORY: Never felt this desperate and scared and unsure what to do in my life.

JACLYN LEE: Karen Flory and her husband thought they were escaping the cold by vacationing in Jamaica Beach right across the street from the water when the snow accumulated and the power cut out.

- Welcome to the bedroom.

JACLYN LEE: They were forced to sleep in their truck to stay warm.

So you're sleeping in that truck. At that point, what's going through your mind?

KAREN FLORY: When will this ever end, or, you know, how are we going to get through this?

JACLYN LEE: And they fought tooth and nail for a generator after days without heat.

KAREN FLORY: Seeing two, I laid across to because somebody grabbed the other one.

JACLYN LEE: Now that the cold snap is over, Galveston mayor Craig Brown says the city has many elderly and disabled community members forced out of their homes due to burst pipes. He blames the power blackouts.

CRAIG BROWN: What made it frustrating for us is that this was controlled by entities that we have no authority over-- that we have no say into. I do think an investigation needs to be undertaken.

JACLYN LEE: Tourists like Patty Tilley her husband waited for hours for propane and bottled water. Deprived of a shower for days, she calls this first retirement vacation a nightmare. She's glad it's over.

PATTY TILLEY: And we may go somewhere else next year, [LAUGHS] maybe Florida.

JACLYN LEE: And the Galveston mayor says the state will be sending a military plane filled with much needed bottled water. He expects distribution to begin Monday. So far, there's a total of two deaths in Galveston County related to the storm. Five are still being investigated. In Galveston, Texas, Jaclyn Lee, Channel 6 Action News.