ELIZABETHTOWN, Ky. (WAVE) – The wind in WAVE Country was so intense Wednesday that it snapped a local radio station’s tower in half around 11 a.m.
"Heard the crash and said, ‘What in the world is that?’" Joe Fedele, director of programming for WAKY, said.
It was the strong winds that left the top half of the station’s 100-foot radio tower dangling.
"If you asked me what the least likely thing to happen was, it's the tower coming down," Fedele said.
Because the tower is down, Fedele wasn’t on-air Wednesday afternoon on 103.5 or 105.5. Instead, he was taking calls from listeners wondering what happened to their signal.
WAKY’s other channels, 100.1 FM, 106.3 FM, and 620 AM, are fed off a different system.
Fedele said being off-air is a nightmare, but having the tower break the day before a holiday makes it worse; getting equipment and people they need for repairs is tough.
"Most places are already closed," Rene' Bell, managing partner for W&B Broadcasting, said. "They close early on Thanksgiving. Insurance agencies, people that would provide us parts."
Bell said because the damage is pretty bad, they are going to have to get a new tower. Being off-air on two of their most popular stations in the meantime could have a huge impact on business.
"We aren't able to serve our listeners, our advertisers, as they expect," Bell said, “especially before Black Friday."
Bell said it may be a few weeks before WAKY FM and Big Cat are back to normal operations.
“We are extremely sorry that this happened. We will be back on-air as quickly as we can be back on-air,” Bell said.
Until repairs are made to 103.5, you can still listen to WAKY in Northern Louisville and Southern Indiana on 100.1 FM. Jefferson and the Lake Forrest areas can listen on 106.3 FM. Metro Louisville and Southern Indiana can also tune in on 620 AM.
WAKY is also streaming online at wakyradio.com or on the WAKY app.