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Alabama radio station booted from air after 200-foot tower vanished and not using a hint

Alabama radio station booted from air after 200-foot tower vanished and not using a hint



“Have you seen a 200 foot tower going by?”

That’s the query WJLX normal manager Brett Elmore is asking everybody after thieves made off together with his radio station’s AM tower final week, ensuing within the station having to close down.

The Jasper, Alabama, station was ordered off air by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as authorities proceed to analyze how and why the heavy metal construction immediately disappeared.

“In all my years of being within the enterprise, across the enterprise, all the pieces like that, I’ve by no means seen something like this,” Elmore advised The Post.

“You don’t hear of a 200-foot tower being stolen,” he added.”

While the self-proclaimed “Sound of Walker County,” nonetheless has its FM transmitter and tower, it isn’t allowed to function whereas the AM station is off the air, in accordance with FCC.

“Even although these are extraordinary circumstances they nonetheless wouldn’t permit us to try this despite the fact that we’re the one voice on this group,” Elmore mentioned, including that the Walker County has a inhabitants of about 68,000 individuals.

Station normal manager Brett Elmore mentioned he had no clue how the thieves made off with the massive tower. WBRC FOX6 News

The weird theft has had a major influence on the station — which has been on the air for the reason that mid-Nineteen Fifties — and the group it companies, he advised The Post.

“It’s a matter of security. If one thing [significant] occurred, listeners tune in and we received’t be there,” he mentioned.

“With our station down, the group has misplaced its sound and misplaced its voice.”

Replacing the tower may price the station wherever between $60,000 to $100,000, Elmore advised The Post, including that the station’s grounds weren’t insured for theft.

According to the radio station, they briefly shut down their FM tower, however will proceed to broadcast on-line.
WBRC FOX6 News

The theft was found Feb. 2, when a upkeep crew arrived to hold out some work on the positioning. The radio tower was beforehand positioned in a wooded space, behind an area poultry plant.

According to Elmore, thieves dismantled the tower by slicing the wires that secured it and likewise stole different tools from the property. He mentioned the bandits additionally stole the station’s AM transmitter from a close-by constructing.

Elmore instantly reported the theft, however mentioned that native police had been equally shocked on the brazen theft. The thieves are believed to have stolen the tower to promote it for scrap metallic.

“With our station down, the group has misplaced its sound and misplaced its voice,” Elmore mentioned. WBRC FOX6 News

If caught, the suspects may face a wonderful or as much as 10 years in jail.

“Police have been some video footage however there aren’t any new developments so far as I’m conscious,” Elmore mentioned.

Jasper police spokeswoman Rachel Karr confirmed Friday authorities are investigating the incident. In an announcement, police mentioned the theft was reported to police on Feb. 2, however the date and time of the crime shouldn’t be recognized. Police are searching for ideas from the general public.

News of the tower theft rapidly went viral and Elmore is now attempting to leverage that by beginning a GoFundMe web page to boost cash for a alternative tower. It had raised simply over $1,300 as of Friday afternoon.

“It’s superb a 200-foot tower may disappear but additionally very tragic as a result of it hit a small enterprise and a small group the place native radio may be very viable,” he mentioned.

For that cause, Elmore insists {that a} new tower shall be protected with gates, locks and cameras.

“I can’t spare any expense in ensuring Alcatraz looks as if it hasn’t seen something [compared to our facility],” he added.

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