Gulf Coast Stations Prepare For Hurricane Ian.
Beasley Media Group radio stations are preparing for Hurricane Ian and its effect on the company’s corporate home state of Florida.
In Ft. Myers, which is located on the coast of the lower Gulf of Mexico where the storm is on track to enter, Beasley stations aired updates from WBBH-TV once an hour throughout Sunday, Sept. 25. On Monday, local coverage will include hourly updates throughout the day. From midnight Tuesday until 6pm, Beasley Media Group stations will air pre-recorded updates twice an hour ahead of each commercial stopset.
If the storm is at a Category 2 at 6pm on Tuesday, updates will air every 15 minutes and if Ian develops into a Category 3 or higher, the stations will go wall-to-wall coverage through its partnership with WBBH-TV.
iHeartMedia EVP Jeff Littlejohn says their stations are always prepared. He added, "We are monitoring the storm with NHC as well as targeted meteorologist reports and keeping our team up to date. We have teams and equipment standing by to assist with any required recovery after the storm, but we fully expect to perform for our listeners and advertisers as we have in previous storms."
Further north along the Gulf Coast, stations in the Tampa-St. Petersburg market will focus on education and preparedness, “including promoting our hurricane supply checklist online as well as the latest from the national weather center and our storm center tracker all of which are already live on all of our websites,” a statement from the company read.
TV partner WFTS’ “Action News” will provide meteorologists to Beasley Media Group radio station morning shows on Monday. Depending on the storm’s path, WFTS will provide weather personalities throughout other dayparts as needed.
If the area is not under an official hurricane watch, regular station talent will be in place and updates from “Action News” will air as needed. If a hurricane watch is implemented, the stations will air hourly updates, and will increase the reports to two or three an hour if the Tampa area is under a hurricane warning. In the event the storm poses an imminent threat to station staff, Beasley Media Group Tampa-St. Pete stations will simulcast WFTS-TV.
Beasley is also working with Quu to make sure important safety and preparedness messaging is up and running via the stations on the dashboard for drivers. Messaging has been implemented as of Saturday morning across the BMG stations in Tampa and Ft. Myers. In addition, the corporate digital content team is working around the clock with company Digital Program Directors in the markets to develop custom content for the individual markets and have links featuring important information available for listeners to access.