Springfield Radio and the Storm

Cdsull502@aol.com Cdsull502@aol.com
Thu Jun 2 16:59:50 EDT 2011

I was listening to WHYN on line last night; I am a former  Springfield 
resident.  They said that WPKX had been off for a few hours but  had returned to 
the air and that WRNX had been operating at half power but had  been 
restored to full power.  I assume those stations had problems related  to power 
outages, not destroyed equipment.  I checked WMAS on line; it  sounded like it 
was operating normally.  Their tower (both WHLL and  WMAS-FM) is located on 
the river in Springfield's North End.  Luckily, for  them, the tornado 
veered to the South.  WACM and WSPR towers are  in West Springfield, but away 
from the affected  area.    
WHYN attempted to cover the storm, but with Cheap Channel  ownership, they 
have only a 1 man news department.  They were  reduced to asking the 
listeners to phone in to them storm  information.
They also asked local officials to call the station with updates. A  
listener called the station to advise them that school in Springfield  was 
canceled for Thursday.  I always thought that it was the broadcaster's  role to 
inform the listener, not the other way around.  The one man news  department 
did leave the Main Street studio to attend  and broadcast over the telephone 
the 11 PM Mayor's news conference.   This morning, the station was utilizing 
a WHYN salesman who lives in  Monson to cover the destruction there.  I 
guess they should be  applauded for effort, but with no reporters  in the field, 
this  was clearly not their finest hour.  I do not know if they were on 
generator  power or regular power; their studio is very close to the affected 
area in  downtown Springfield.
I did catch over the Internet WWLP-22 streaming continuous  coverage.  It 
seemed to me that they did a good job with plenty of  reports from the field, 
along with cogent reporting from their studio with  anchor Barry Krieger 
and weatherman Brian Lapis.  They out performed  WGGB with superior resources 
and reporters. 22's initial report  with live coverage of the tornado coming 
across the Connecticut  River conveys a sense of urgency about the 
situation without creating  panic.  It's  attached.            
_Click  here: Video: June 1, 2011 Tornado | WWLP.com_ 

Chris  Sullivan

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