Families relieved to find warmth, safety arrive at city’s warming center

VIA, SAPD provided rides to people who needed them to get to the warming center

SAN ANTONIO – Families looking for a warm place to stay finally found relief Tuesday as the City of San Antonio opened up a warming center at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center.

Carl Serth, his wife, daughter and grandson were among the first to arrive at the warming center after trying to survive at home since 5 a.m. Tuesday without any power.

Serth said the power was on and off inconsistently on Monday.

“I’ve been looking for a place to stay, but all the hotels are booked or have no power,” he said.

Serth and his family left their blistering cold home, where they had no warm food and very little water pressure. He says it has been a frustrating situation.

Many who arrived at the convention center got rides from VIA shuttles by calling 311. San Antonio police officers drove others to the shelter.

An 83-year-old woman says she was disturbed by the situation she and others in the city have found themselves in during this crisis.

“It’s been awful, extremely awful. I feel like they could’ve done a little bit better job than this. It’s a really sad, sad situation,” she said.

Families said they were grateful to finally have a warm place for their frightened little ones.

The warming center can fit up to 500 people and possibly more. The City of Converse also opened up a warming shelter at the Judson High School gym on Tuesday.

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