Death toll from February winter storm climbs to 14 in Bexar County, 210 in Texas

Number may grow as more deaths are confirmed

A man crosses a bridge along the River Walk as snow falls, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, in San Antonio. Snow, ice and sub-freezing weather continue to wreak havoc on the state's power grid and utilities. (AP Photo/Eric Gay) (Eric Gay, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

SAN ANTONIO – Bexar County’s death toll related to the February winter storm grew in the latest tally released by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Statewide, officials added 59 more deaths to the total, bringing the death toll from 151 to 210. The numbers were last updated in late April.

Five of those newly added deaths came from Bexar County, where the death toll grew to 14, according to the state’s health department. Hypothermia was listed as a factor in each cause of death, according to the Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Nieves Barrientos, 64, was one of the people added to the official winter storm death toll. She was discovered on Feb. 16 by her daughter, Evelia Aguilar.

“I told my husband ‘let’s go check on her,’ but the weather was really bad. So we had to wait,” Aguilar said.

Her autopsy showed that she had five layers of clothing covering her body, but noted rashes on her body due to cold exposure.

Officials have previously said that the total number of deaths caused by the winter storm, which led to days-long outages for millions of Texans, would be a “slow process.”

The storm resulted in a number of wrongful death lawsuits filed against CPS Energy and other electric providers across Texas.

The highest winter storm death tolls have been reported in Harris, Travis and Dallas counties. Harris County’s death toll rose to 43, Travis County’s rose to 28 and Dallas County’s rose to 20.

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About the Author:

Fares Sabawi has been a journalist in San Antonio for four years. He has covered several topics, but specializes in crime, courts, open records and data visualization.