US family sues power company for $100m after boy dies of hypothermia

The family of a young boy who died of hypothermia during Texas's devastating power outages are suing the state electricity body for US$100 million (A$126 million).

US family sues power company for $100m after boy dies of hypothermia

The family of a young boy who died of hypothermia during Texas's devastating power outages are suing the state electricity body for US$100 million (A$126 million).

Cristian Pineda, 11, shared a room with his family of five for warmth when the power went out in their home, the Houston Chronicle reports.

But he went into hypothermia and died as his younger brother slept in the bed beside him.

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Cristian's home was one of many to have its power switched off by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), which administers electricity in the state.

His family's lawyer Tony Buzbee said their energy provider Entergy and ERCOT made decisions "based on profits".

"This young boy first saw snow on Monday, and he died on Tuesday," Mr Buzbee said.

"People died. ERCOT and the electrical providers like Entergy must account."

Cristian and his family lived in Conroe, a town on the northern fringes of the Houston metropolitan area.

Cristian's autopsy is yet to be completed, but he did not have any underlying conditions that would lead to his death, his family said.

Cristian's mother Maria Pineda is suing the electricity provider for US$100 million.

ERCOT said in a statement to ABC13 that it had not reviewed the lawsuit as yet.

"Our thoughts are with all Texans who have and are suffering due to this past week," the statement read.

"However, because approximately 46 percent of privately-owned generation tripped offline this past Monday morning, we are confident that our grid operators made the right choice to avoid a statewide blackout."

Mr Buzbee pledged more lawsuits were on the way in relation to the blackout.

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Millions of Texans went without power for days following an unusually cold storm which put unprecedented pressure on the grid.

The power outages were a combined failure of high demand and infrastructure failures.

Texas operates its own electricity grid, which allows it to escape federal regulation.

As a result, much of its electrical infrastructure was not weatherproofed to cope with the freezing conditions the state endured.

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Source : 9 News More