Radio Reacts Swiftly To Boston Marathon Bombings
April 15, 2013 at 5:18 PM (PT)
BOSTON-area radio stations have quickly swung into "live and local" mode following the string of bombings at the BOSTON MARATHON.
GREATER MEDIA/BOSTON, which did not have any employees down at the race when the explosions took place, has ratcheted up local coverage and feedback. Rhythmic AC WBQT (HOT 96.9) morning hosts BALTAZAR and PEBBLES returned to the station this afternoon to provide timely updates, take calls live on the air from listeners and discuss what happened. Afternoon personalities STEVE KELLY from Country WKLB and JULIE DEVEREAUX from Classic Hits WROR are both providing information and traffic updates. AC WMJX (MAGIC 106.7) is providing updates on the air as new information becomes available.
"As this story develops, we are breaking every 10 minutes or so, repeating whatever information we have -- street closures, hospital issues, injuries, college lockdowns, cancellations, etc," WKLB PD MIKE BROPHEY said. "We asked our morning cohost LORI to come in and do news in the afternoon to bring more credibility to our information. We have ceased all contesting, and watching what songs we play. The main issue is giving information and trying to calm people. We will also give listeners a sounding board on the air when we feel it’s appropriate."
"We all are okay," he added, "although we had some people from our building on site just a couple of hours prior."
CCM+E Top 40/Rhythmic WJMN (JAMN 94.5)/BOSTON APD/MD DJ PUPDAWG reports that all JAMN 94.5 staffers appear to be alright. JAMN 94.5 is still playing music but not in their usually scheduled mixes. The station is doing extended breaks to give out important information as it becomes available. JAMN 94.5 is also standing by prepared to break for press conferences and updates from city, county and state officials. You can hear Talk sister WXKS-A coverage via iHEARTRADIO.
At ENTERCOM/BOSTON, "We broke in with live coverage on both WEEI and WRKO just before 3p when first word of the story broke," JASON WOLFE reports. "After about a half-hour I began simulcasting WRKO’s coverage with HOWIE CARR on WEEI and the WEEI radio network. That will continue throughout the night. HOWIE has been taking calls from the scene as well as airing all of the media briefings that have occurred. It’s still a fluid situation as you know, but that’s where we are so far."
"A number of our staff were at the finish line today," ENTERCOM Active Rock WAAF/BOSTON PD RON VALERI stated. "Thankfully everybody is okay. GREG HILL (a.k.a. The HILL-MAN) and DANIELLE MURR (also of The HILL-MAN Morning Show) were both in the vicinity of the finish line and have been filing eyewitness accounts with WAAF as well as numerous other ENTERCOM stations across the country. Our primary focus on the air all day and right now is to disseminate key facts and helpful information. We aired a press conference earlier from the POLICE COMMISSIONER and will continue to break format as necessary. We'll carry the PRESIDENT's address momentarily. As for the music, we've removed songs that would be insensitive or inappropriate. Hopefully there won't be any further incidents."
All of CBS RADIO's stations in BOSTON took a live feed of News WBZ-A coverage just at the top of the 3p hour -- and are still airing coverage. KYW/PHILADELPHIA has also been carrying WBZ’s coverage, as is WTIC-A/HARTFORD. All other stations are doing top-of-the-hour updates.
CBS/BOSTON offered text coverage with pictures, live streams on WBZ-TV, WBZ-A/F, and a live camera at the finish line, which stayed active during the entire event.
Other markets directed users to CBS/BOSTON for the live streams and updated coverage via their breaking news bars as well as including links to BOSTON's coverage in their local stories. On the other local sites we provided local reaction to the events in BOSTON. BOSTON stations also used their social media accounts (TWITTER and FACEBOOK) to provide continuous updates of events.
In NEW YORK, WINS-A is broadcasting CBS News’ audio, while News WCBS-A began longiform coverage that included WBZ-TV and WBZ Radio, and CBS NEWS just before 3:10p. Anchors covered the BOSTON story and also what it meant locally with reports from City Hall and the NYPD’s response. They're sending a local reporter to BOSTON for additional coverage. . Here's CBS coverage of the incident.
It was all-hands-on-deck at SALEM RADIO NETWORK as news broke of the bombings at the Boston Marathon.
* SRN NEWS immediately launched five hours of Special Reports at 20-past and 40-past each hour -- and the Boston news literally was covered as-it-unfolded live during the nationally-syndicated MICHAEL MEDVED Show.
* SRN VP/News & Talk Programming TOM TRADUP anchored a one-hour special 4-5p ET, fielding calls from listeners and interviewing, among others, SRN talk host HUGH HEWITT, himself a past runner in the BOSTON MARATHON.
* MIKE GALLAGHER returned to his EMPIRE STATE BUILDING studios from 9-11p ET for a live special broadcast on WEST COAST affiliate 870AM "THE ANSWER"/LOS ANGELES
* SRN morning drive host BILL BENNETT, host of BILL BENNETT’s MORNING IN AMERICA, will spend 6-9a covering the blasts and the domestic foreign policy ramifications with terrorism expert ANDY MCCARTHY, U.S. Senator RON JOHNSON (R-WISCONSIN), K.T. MCFARLAND, national security expert and FOX NEWS analyst KIRSTEN POWERS who will focus on media coverage of today’s bombings
* Finally, many stations -- including SALEM Talk 94.5/GREENVILLE-SPARTANBURG, SC -- created their own promos, repurposing MICHAEL MEDVED and other SRN hosts to showcase how their listeners heard the breaking news live as it happened.
On a national scope, FOX NEWS RADIO began covering the breaking news shortly after 3PM today with a FOX News Alert issued at 3:15p/ET. Live coverage began at 3:30PM and ran for more than 90 minutes with a second round running from 5:30p to around 6:20p/ET. Live updates will continue to be provided throughout the hour until 2a and will be resumed again at 5a. Listeners can log on for coverage at: www.foxnewsradio.com.
Veteran talker JEFF KATZ, based in the BOSTON area, has been doing live hits with several stations nationwide covering the explosions, including SALEM Talk KSKY-A (AM 660 THE ANSWER)/DALLAS, GREATER MEDIA Talk WBT-A-F/CHARLOTTE, CBS RADIO News-Talk WCCO-A/MINNEAPOLIS, ARKANSAS RADIO NETWORK, FOX NEWS RADIO, and COMPASS MEDIA NETWORKS' TODD SCHNITT, with more to come for CLEAR CHANNEL News-Talk WHO-A/DES MOINES, CLEAR CHANNEL Talk WLW-A/CINCINNATI, CLEAR CHANNEL News-Talk KFBK-A-F/SACRAMENTO, CLEAR CHANNEL Talk WJBO-A/BATON ROUGE, RENDA Talk WGUF/NAPLES-FT. MYERS, and CLEAR CHANNEL Talk WFLA-A/TAMPA. KATZ is available for any stations interested in reports from BOSTON; reach him at email@example.com.