Find City of Austin resources and services to help you recover from the winter storm.
Be aware of scams! If you are an Austin Water or Austin Energy customer and you receive a phone call threatening to interrupt service, prevent repairs, demand immediate payment, or request credit card or bank account information, hang up and dial 3-1-1 or 512-974-2000 and report the incident immediately.
- Safety and Shelter Information
Up-to-date emergency information, including Warming Centers and Cold Weather Shelters, is available in 14 languages on the Alerts Page.
- Disaster Recovery and Mental Health
The City encourages the public to consider their mental health and well-being during the recovery process after an emergency. Emotional toll following a disaster, not just the financials strains of damage and loss of your home, business, or personal property, can be devastating. It is normal to feel overwhelmed or anxious during disaster recovery, and we encourage the community to follow mental health guidance after an emergency or disaster:
- Be aware of exhaustion
- Don’t try to do too much at once. Set priorities and pace yourself.
- Get enough rest.
- Drink plenty of clean water.
- Eat well.
- Wear sturdy work boots and gloves.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and clean water often when working in debris
- More mental health guidance is available from FEMA.
- Austin Energy
Visit austinenergy.com/alerts for information about current electric system conditions.
- Frozen Pipes Information from Austin Water
As things begin to thaw, please take time to check your pipes for areas that may be frozen and thaw them properly and slowly. If these steps do not work, contact a licensed plumber or your property manager. For assistance with water shut off or issues with a suspected damaged meter, call the Austin Water 24/7 emergency line at 512-972-1000.
- Debris Collection
Small branches, yard trimmings and leaves
Austin Resource Recovery (ARR) customers should place small branches and yard trimmings into the green composting cart, lawn and leaf bags or a reusable container and set them out on the next scheduled collection day. Small branches (no longer than five feet and no thicker than three inches in diameter) that do not fit into the green cart with the lid closed should be stacked into manageable bundles no heavier than 30 pounds. ARR will collect the contents of your green cart and up to 15 extra items (lawn and leaf bags or stacks of small branches) placed beside the cart. Learn more about composting collection.
Large branches and tree limbs
- ARR customers can dispose of branches longer than five feet during their twice-annual large brush collection.
- Austin and Travis County residents can drop off large branches and limbs at the Hornsby Bend Biosolids Management Plant.
ARR customers can get updates about service changes by downloading the Austin Recycles app or by signing up for reminders at austintexas.gov/myschedule.
- Repairs, Permits, and Code Compliance
Repairs & Permits
The City’s Development Services Department will work with homeowners, business owners, and contractors to permit and inspect emergency repairs to ensure work was completed safely. That means that if your home or business is in need of emergency repairs for your safety, work can begin immediately. Types of repairs that will require permits include:
- Ruptured or damaged water lines
- Main electrical service
- Structural damage
Visit the Permits for Emergency Repairs webpage for more information.
Common weather-related violations may include no hot water, burst pipes, and cracks in the ceiling or walls. Residents experiencing a possible code violation should first notify their landlord.
For complaints related to tenant-occupied properties, inspectors are following up to ensure landlords get their properties up to code as quickly as possible. Visit the Report a Code Violation page to learn how to report a possible code violation.
- Homeowners and Tenant Resources
The Austin Housing and Planning Department’s home repair program can assist eligible homeowners who need repairs. Call 512-974-3100 or email the Austin Housing and Planning Department with questions about these services. View Tips for Filing Insurance Claims (PDF)
Visit Resources for Renters to see if you qualify for tenant resources, including legal consultation, residential rental assistance, utility bill assistance, and more. Learn how to report a possible code violation.
- Austin Fire Department: Fire Protection Systems
AFD received over 100 reports of fire protection systems impairments during this weather event. If a fire protection system is impaired, a fire watch will need to be conducted until the system is restored. Fire watch must be conducted by a person(s) responsible for making early notification to 911 in the event of a fire.
The Fire Marshal’s Office is working to ensure all fire protection systems have been properly repaired and placed back in-service before releasing responsible property owners/managers from their fire watch responsibilities.
- NGO (Non-Governmental Organization) Support
Central Texas Food Bank: Winter Weather Response
In response to the winter weather, the Central Texas Food Bank has mobilized to increase distributions supporting shelter sites across the City of Austin while continuing regular operations serving 21 Central Texas counties.
How to Get Help
If you or someone you know needs help with food, please visit the Central Texas Food Bank website to find an interactive map of food distribution locations and click “Find Food Now”—or call 2-1-1 to be connected with services.
How You Can Help
Donate: The best way to support the Food Bank is to make monetary donations that will allow them to prepare quickly by purchasing the exact items we need to keep our neighbors fed. Visit their website at to contribute.
Volunteer: If you are unable to make a monetary donation, you have the option of registering for a volunteer shift. Central Texas Food Bank need a minimum of 6,000 volunteers in January and February to meet the ongoing need in our community. Click here to learn more and sign up.
The Central Texas Food Bank can help respond to emergencies and disasters. Click here to learn more about available programs and resources.
- Disaster Declarations
No local disaster declarations were made for Winter Storm Heather. To learn more about the state and federal disaster declaration process, including financial resources visit the Emergency Preparedness Resources page.