Houston Radio Prepares For Hurricane Ike
September 12, 2008 at 8:40 AM (PT)
Floodwaters surged into GALVESTON ISLAND neighborhoods FRIDAY morning with the center of HURRICANE IKE still more than 200 miles from landfall, reports CNN. Waves washed for blocks inland, the beginning of a storm surge that forecasters warned could reach up to 22 feet and bring "certain death" to anyone who remained in GALVESTON BAY homes.
Rarely do forecasters use such forceful language.
The last time they did was three years ago as HURRICANE KATRINA closed in on NEW ORLEANS and THE GULF COAST.
This is a serious storm. Evacuations are still in progress.
HOUSTON radio is working to inform the public about this storm.
CLEAR CHANNEL News-Talk KTRH-A/HOUSTON has cancelled regular talk programming to make way for hurricane coverage, while the station's alternate Internet stream KTRH 2 is also carrying coverage, including addresses from Gov. RICK PERRY. The station normally carries ASTROS play-by-play, but FRIDAY's and SATURDAY's home games with the CUBS have been postponed.
CBS RADIO's News KIKK-A (CNN 650), Sports KILT-A, Top 40/Rhythmic KKHH (HOT 95.7), and Country KILT-F plan to go to simulcast coverage when situations warrant, according to CNN 650’s morning show FRIDAY.
KILT PD JEFF GARRISON said, "KILT is in full coverage -- this is a serious storm. Evacuations are still in progress. The CBS cluster will launch into a simulcast to continue to communicate all information and warnings through out the landing of IKE."
KKHT (HOT 95.7) PD MARK ADAMS added, "We’re planning on remaining on the air and in-format and are coordinating all of our efforts with our sister stations at CBS/HOUSTON. Should conditions intensify, we’re also prepared to go to a full news simulcast. Though I’m new to HOUSTON and have never dealt with a hurricane before, the management and staff of our other stations are veterans, and with their help we’re as prepared as we can be do make sure we’re delivering important news and information to our listeners throughout the storm and serving our community. It’s obviously serious, but people are dealing with it fairly calmly."
CUMULUS Top 40 KRBE/HOUSTON PD LESLIE WHITTLE told ALL ACCESS, "We have a great text plan in place. Listeners sign up to receive updates so they can get the latest on the storm, closings, supplies availability, etc. from their hometown, even if they chose to evacuate. We do those in advance of the storm and during the return and recovery -- and they worked great during RITA three years ago. We're also going wall-to-wall with coverage from our news partner KHOU CHANNEL 11 at 6 this evening. We are airing updates from other CUMULUS stations along the coast and throughout the south re: shelters, gas, etc. as people evacuate."
COX/HOUSTON OM JOHNNY CHIANG told us, "We're doing well right now. We learned a lot from Hurricanes KATRINA and RITA in 2005, so we are as prepared as we can be for IKE this time around. We've made sure that all of our generators are topped off with fuel so we can stay on the air for a while if and when we lose power. We got hotel rooms for our staff across the street from the stations so they don't have to drive through flood waters to get to work SATURDAY morning after IKE's landfall. We also have an agreement with a local TV station to carry its audio should that become necessary. But that's a last resort."
RADIO ONE Top 40/Rhythmic KBXX/HOUSTON PD TERRI THOMAS checked in with ALL ACCESS as her essential crew is literally camped out at the KBXX studios. MADD HATTA and the MADD HATTA MORNING SHOW will man the broadcast throughout HURRICANE IKE's arrival on TEXAS' Gulf Coast. THOMAS will be alongside her team at Camp KBXX until IKE blows over.
At UNIVISION RADIO Top 40/Rhythmic KPTY (93.3 THE PARTY)/HOUSTON, PD/Regional Programmer CINDY HILL is staying on-site to lead her team. KPTY staffers CRISCO KIDD, CRISTAL BUBBLIN' and HARDBODY KIOTTI are also on hand, sharing jocking duties through IKE. UNIVISION/HOUSTON staffers are pitching in wherever needed, like at Tejano KPTI, to keep the cluster's stations on-air.
Follow weather information about HURRICANE IKE here.