Death toll from U.S. Texas winter storm grows to 111

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HOUSTON, March 25 (Xinhua) — The number of Texans who died because of last month’s winter storm in the U.S. state of Texas has reached 111, according to the latest data released Thursday by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS).

The agency linked 111 deaths to the mid-February storm, which left millions of people across the state without power or water. Harris County, where the country’s fourth largest city Houston is located, had the most deaths of 31 people.

The department said the deaths occurred between Feb. 11 and March 5, and most were the result of hypothermia. Other causes of death include carbon-monoxide poisoning, exacerbation of chronic illness, falls, fire, lack of home oxygen, medical equipment failure and traffic accidents.

There were three main ways DSHS was notified of disaster-related deaths: medical certifiers submit a DSHS form specifying that a particular death was related to a disaster; medical certifiers flag a death record as disaster related; and DSHS epidemiologists match public reports of disaster-related deaths to death certificates.

The death toll is expected to grow as the state’s disaster epidemiologists continue their work. Last week, when DSHS released the first official statewide numbers, the preliminary toll was 57. DSHS will update the information weekly. Enditem

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