Ice Storm This Weekend May Cause Outages

Jan 12, 2017

The ice storm has caused classes at Cameron to be canceled on Friday, January 13. The KCCU offices are also closed on Friday. We  will be closed on Monday the 16th for the observance of Martin Luther King Day.

Ice on radio towers and power lines wreak havoc on radio stations. It is possible that KCCU may not be available in your area because of either a power outage or ice coating our antennas.

Even though we are aware the potential exists, there is little we can do about either. If there are wide-spread power outages in the Lawton area, our entire network including internet streams will be down. If there are local power-outages in your area, your local KCCU station will be down.

When ice coats a radio tower, the ice begins to focus the energy inward, and that can cause severe problems to the physical antenna, the transmission line and the transmitter itself. The focused energy can be hot enough to actually melt the antenna as happened at our Clinton transmitter three years ago. Most modern transmitters sense this inward reflection of power or VSRW, and automatically turn the wattage of the transmitter down so that the components are not damaged. In some cases, the transmitter will shut itself down. Sometimes we shut the transmitter down.

In short, we are aware our signal may be compromised this weekend. We want you to know that we are monitoring the situation. However, if the power is out, or there is ice on the tower, there is nothing we can do. We either have to wait on a power company to restore power, or the temperature to rise and melt the ice.

Also, never stand under or near a radio tower when ice is melting. We have lost satellite dish (Clinton), a transmission antenna (Chickasha), a Yagi antenna (Chickasha) and had a hole put in a transmitter building roof (Lawton) over the past five years due to falling ice. If it can punch a hole in the roof of a metal building, it could also seriously damage a human.