Winter storm death toll in Texas now more than 100, DSHS says


KILLEEN, TEXAS – FEBRUARY 18: Icicles hang off the State Highway 195 sign on February 18, 2021 in Killeen, Texas. Winter storm Uri has brought historic cold weather and power outages to Texas as storms have swept across 26 states with a mix of freezing temperatures and precipitation. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — More than 100 Texans lost their lives in the February winter storms in Texas, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

DSHS revised its February winter storm death toll Thursday, saying 111 Texans died in the storms. Previously, the total stood at 57.

In East Texas, the death toll for now clocks in at nine people: one in Hopkins County, one in Cass County, one in Rusk County, two in Henderson County, one in Trinity County and three in Nacogdoches County.

In Central Texas, one death in Fayette, Lee and San Saba Counties each were caused by the storm, two in Williamson County and nine in Travis County. The county with the most deaths is Harris at 31, according to DSHS data.

DSHS says many of these deaths were caused by hypothermia. Other deaths were caused by traffic accidents, carbon monoxide poisoning, medical equipment failure, exacerbation of chronic illness, lack of home oxygen, falls and fires.

These deaths happened between Feb. 11 and March 5.

DSHS officials are notified of these winter storm deaths in three ways:

  • Medical certifiers submit a DSHS form specifying that a particular death was related to a disaster.
  • Medical certifiers flag a death record as disaster related.
  • DSHS epidemiologists match public reports of disaster-related deaths to death certificates.

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