Broadcasters, Manufacturers Lend Support to Hurricane Katrina Victims

Sep 6, 2005 2:59 PM, By Mix Editors

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Telos, Omnia and Axia Audio are helping broadcasters with facilities affected by Hurricane Katrina with priority technical support, troubleshooting and loaner equipment.

Telos is staffing after-hours e-mail tech support, with call-backs where needed. Support staff can be reached 24/7 by e-mailing support@Telos-Systems.com. Support is also available by phone at 216/241-7225 during office hours.

Below is a list of additional resources and special assistance available to broadcasters and the general public.

The Society of Broadcast Engineers (www.sbe.org) is helping to match up broadcasters in need with those who have the ability to help. SBE members affected by Katrina can e-mail hurricanehelp@sbe.org or call 317/846-9092 with their needs; SBE members who can supply shelter, clothing and/or needed parts for damaged equipment should contact SBE at the same e-mail address.

CPB, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (www.cpb.org), has $500,000 in grants available to non-commercial stations affected by the hurricane. These funds are available immediately for emergency repairs and generator fuel. Contact CPB directly at 202/879-9600.

The National Association of Broadcasters has teamed with the American Red Cross, and has radio and TV PSAs for disaster relief available for stations wishing to air them. Radio PSAs of :10- to :30-second duration can be downloaded directly from www.nab.org/publicservice/Relief/. TV stations can get a free overnight dub of video PSAs by e-mailing Sarah Roberts at sroberts@nab.org.

The FCC's Media Bureau has temporarily changed some of its normal procedures to help broadcasters knocked off the air by Katrina resume service. FM and TV stations in the affected area can erect temporary towers without prior FCC authorization; AM stations can resume broadcasting using single-wire horizontal or vertical antennas or non-directional vertical elements of directional arrays. Temporary authority requests can be submitted by e-mail. Many filing and regulatory deadlines have also been extended. See the FCC homepage at www.fcc.gov for a complete list of special procedures.

Many broadcasters have joined with the American Red Cross (www.redcross.org) to raise funds for disaster relief. Stations who want to put a Red Cross donation banner on their websites can get them from www.redcross.org/psa/bannerorder/index_GenDS.html.

FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Administration, has posted a web page listing 23 certified charitable organizations accepting donations of cash and/or volunteer labor for the relief effort, which may be useful for stations passing information to their listeners. Web link: www.fema.gov/news/newsrelease.fema?id=18473

Information on obtaining Federal assistance for citizens affected by the disaster is available online at http://disasterhelp.gov. This site includes a "friends and family registry" that can assist in reuniting friends and loved ones separated during the storm.






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