Saturday, April 16, 2011

Raleigh tornado takes out a radio station

Capitol's Hispanic sports-talk station, 1550 AM/ESPN Deportes, was a casualty of the tornado Saturday afternoon.

WCLY is located on Maywood Ave. in south Raleigh near the NC Farmers Market. No one injured; it's a satellite-delivered format and the transmitter site is monitored remotely.

It appears that the tornado winds severed the guy wires, and the 285' tower fell over. Engineers hope to begin repairs Sunday using a generator and a temporary low-power antenna.

The tower collapse impacted another station, too. We share that antenna with Curtis Media's WQDR AM which plays classic country music.

Photos - Rob Truitt, Sunrise Broadcasting

The storm affected our sports group across the board: NC State's spring football game was cut short as the storm approached, and in Durham, the start of the Bulls baseball game was delayed for an hour. Our radio stations are located at Highwoods in north Raleigh...pretty close to the tornado's path, but everything was intact there. We did lose power. Fortunately, we have an industrial strength generator.