During the Texas power crisis where up to 15 million people lost power, we uncovered some disturbing internet searches in the Lone Star State of desperate people trying to find resources to survive.
On Monday, when wholesale electricity rates jumped and rolling blackouts plunged millions into darkness, we noted internet search trends in the state for "firewood" exploded.
By Thursday, we showed readers internet searches for "pipe burst" erupted and even suggested that insurance claims were about to erupt.
Shedding more light onto the "humanitarian crisis" as millions of Texans got a taste of what it's like to live in a third world country, Google Trends adds more color onto the distressing search trends as millions struggled to survive the Arctic blast.
Searches for "soup", "fireplace", "propane", among other things, erupted this week.
In the note titled "Is Texas Facing A Humanitarian Crisis?" we documented that people waited in lines across the state to fill up their propane tanks. Houston Chronicle's Brett Coomer noted that many of these folks did not have power for days.
Google Trends also said search trends for "free water near me" rose 1,650% over the past day. With millions of Texans still facing water issues, other search terms such as "Is it safe to wash dishes when there is a boil order" surged 1,400%.
More #Texas trends over past day:— GoogleTrends (@GoogleTrends) February 19, 2021
"Free water near me” +1,650%
“Is it safe to wash dishes when there is a boil order” +1,400%
“When will grocery stores be restocked” +1,200%
“Food bank registration” +450%
While Texans raced to supermarkets over the week, those who were less fortunate, already dealing with food and housing insecurities thanks to the virus pandemic downturn, frantically searched "Foodbank registration."
Search trends revealed Texans got their first real taste of what it's like to live in a third-world country.