Springfield listener: Radio never warned me

Mark Laurence marklaurence@mac.com
Tue Jun 7 10:34:56 EDT 2011

A Springfield resident tells the Boston Globe she never heard
any tornado warnings, just a Boston talk show, on her local Clear
Channel talk station.  When she called to complain, she found
nobody home:

"I heard no sirens. Cellphones went dead. The emergency alert
system came on, but the announcements were so garbled we
could only make out a few of the words. When we got to our
basement, I tuned in the only Springfield radio station with
reception, a Clear Channel station, and it was airing a talk
show from Boston. It was a Springfield caller to that show
who informed us the tornado was headed directly toward us.
The response of the talk show host was, “There’s a tornado
in Springfield?’’

People I have talked to who were in downtown Springfield got
no warning. Most disturbing, when I called that radio station
the next day to ask why they continued to air a Boston talk
show, I couldn’t reach a human being.

It is just dumb luck that there was so little loss of life. For
the future, sirens would be a good idea. The emergency alert
system should be improved so that the announcements can
be understood. And local radio stations, so many of which are
owned by huge national chains, should have staff on site who
can react when emergencies strike.

Barbara Johnson, Springfield"

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