Reporting an Outage

To improve communications between San Bernard Electric Cooperative and our members during outages, SBEC implemented TextPower in 2019. Text Power gives members the ability to send and receive texts about outages in their area. 

Beginning March 2021, all SBEC members will be automatically enrolled in TextPower. Previously, members were required to self-enroll. Auto enrollment  removes that step for members and alerts members when there is an outage in their area. When an outage is restored, members will receive a text message to indicate that the power is back on. 

SBEC will never use this system to sell or promote products. It will only be used to relay information on service-related issues, such as outage information, emergency information and SBEC updates. 

You will have the ability to unsubscribe from outage text alerts after the initial welcome text.  

All new members will be auto enrolled after they join SBEC. 

The TextPower System will be disabled during any large natural disasters such as a hurricane or rolling blackouts. You will need to report your outage through SBEC by calling 1-800-364-3171.

For any of the SBEC calling or texting outage reporting systems to work for you, your mobile number must be in our member database and associated with your account. If your number has changed and you have not updated it with us, please give us a call to bring it up to date. 



TextPower provides text messaging (SMS) communication between San Bernard Electric Cooperative and our members. You will receive a text message letting you know you are part of an outage. 

To Sign-Up: 

  • Make sure your mobile phone number is listed on your account. 
  • Text SBEC to 85700
  • Confirm your address
  • Save 85700 in your phone's contact list for easy access in the future. 

When an Outage Occurs:

  • Text OUT to 85700
  • Confirm the address listed. 
  • Your report will be automatically submitted to the SBEC Outage Management System. 


  • To unsubscribe to SBEC notifications reply STOP.

For Emergencies or Hazards, please call customer service or our 24/7 dispatch center at 1-800-364-3171. 

Standard Text Messaging Rates Apply.
Text Power


SBEC has implemented the outage management system system that is answered by SBEC’s new Interactive Voice Response system (IVR). You might be asking yourself: “Outage system-IVR? ; this sounds confusing! When in reality during a major power outage, this system will be able to handle hundreds of members trying to alert SBEC. This assists SBEC to respond quicker and more effectively.

When the flow of electricity to your home is disrupted for whatever reason (storms, equipment failure, etc…), the outage system will function as follows:

  • Call SBEC and report the outage
  • The system recognizes your telephone number and pinpoints your location
  • The system asks you to verify your location and accesses your information
  • SBEC dispatches a repair crew

NO WAITING for processing and no BUSY SIGNALS! SIMPLE EFFICIENT Outage Reporting. The call should last approximately one minute.

Through a computerized mapping network, SBEC receives the information we need quickly. The system will show our dispatchers where the problem originates: substation, circuit, transformer or meter.

The key tool for the system is SBEC’s database. The system utilizes our database and recognizes your account first by the telephone number. If we already have your phone number entered in to the system, it will: automatically recognize and pinpoint your location; ask for verification and access your account information. If your phone number is not on file, it will ask for your phone number, meter number, and or account number. This will allow the system to recognize your account. This will lengthen the duration of your call somewhat.

Hopefully you’ll never have to report an outage, but just in case your power does go out, you’ll want SBEC to be notified as quickly as possible so repairs can begin immediately. You can help SBEC make this process quick and efficient as possible by sending SBEC your correct phone number (for each account/s). Please provide SBEC your phone number by calling SBEC at 1-800-364-3171. SBEC will not use your phone number for any other reason. Your number and personal information will be protected by our member privacy policy.


SBEC is dedicated to providing the most reliable power supply possible. However, if your power goes off, please follow these instructions:

  1. Check your circuit breakers or fuses to determine if the trouble is not in your own system.
  2. Check to see if your neighbors have power. This will help SBEC determine whether the trouble is caused by a transformer serving your home or is more general in nature.
    • Call SBEC and report the outage
    • give the name on the account or the account number

    • give the location or address of the outage
    • give the possible cause if known
  3. To report an outage 24-hours a day, 7 days a week, phone the following
    Bellville area : (979) 865-3171
    Columbus area : (979) 732-8346
    Waller area : (936) 372-9176
    Lavaca area : (361) 798-4393
    Other areas : 1-800-364-3171


    Nights, Weekends or Holidays call
    (979) 865-3171 or 1-800-364-3171
  4. If the outage is the responsibility of the cooperative there will be NO CHARGE. If the Co-op responds to a call and it is determined that the outage is on the member's side of the meter, such as a tripped breaker or a blown fuse, etc., you may be billed for a trip fee.