Consider This - KAIT Severe Weather Coverage

Last week I was in Birmingham, Alabama for a Raycom Media management meeting… In case you are not aware… Raycom Media is our parent company. WMC-TV, the NBC affiliate in Memphis , is one of our sister stations and during our meeting Howard Meagle, WMC’s General Manager, informed me that severe thunderstorms were passing through our area. It didn’t take long until we realized that many of the communities in our region received extensive damage from the storms.

Growing up in south Mississippi I have personally witnessed and experienced tornado damage first hand. My family and friends received extensive damage from Hurricane Katrina… Seeing Mother Nature’s wrath is not new to me. However, this past Friday when I had the opportunity to visit Greene County and see the devastation in Marmaduke it is probably the worst concentration of tornado damage that I have ever seen. The biggest surprise for me is that no one was killed… in fact from reports that I have received there were no major injuries. That is truly amazing.

Consider This

Weather coverage is the most important thing we do as a broadcast television station. I know it can be annoying when we interrupt regular programming or crawl weather reports across the screen with that aggravating beep… especially when it doesn't affect your community… but we will not compromise when it comes to doing our best to keep you informed about severe weather… even if the severe weather only impacts a few people.

We are provided a license to operate KAIT and in exchange for that license we are required to serve the public interest. If the weather affected you last week I hope we were able to provide some type of warning that helped you protect yourself and your family. One of the biggest financial investments for KAIT is our weather equipment and services. You can count on us to be there in the future. And just remember… that service is free. With cable and satellite carrying our signal to over 60% of the market many people tend to forget that KAIT weather coverage… and all of our news, sports and entertainment programming… IS free. All you need is a TV and an antenna. In fact, if you find yourself in the dark after the power goes out all you need is a battery powered TV to stay informed.

I started off talking about Raycom Media and wanted to let you know that KAIT being part of this company is good for our employees and also it’s good for you. In our meetings we had in-depth discussions about our group coverage especially in the event of a disaster. With many stations located along the Gulf Coast it is important that we have a strategic plan. With stations located across the Southeast… including the Shreveport/Texarkana market, Memphis, Cape Girardeau, Evansville and over 35 other locations… we have the resources to keep you informed, to help you make educated decisions and to help keep you safe.

Hopefully we will not experience any severe storms in the future, but if we do, KAIT will be here for you. It’s the most important we do.  

It is great to see all the “good neighbors” in Region 8 helping their neighbors in need. If you were affected by the storm last week we are thankful that you are okay and we will continue to work with the area organizations on relief efforts. It will take quite a while before these communities can rebuild and if you want to help please donate to the American Red Cross and specify that the money be used for NE Arkansas, SE Missouri, or a specific town or community that you would like to help.

Godspeed to you and your family.

Viewer Comments:

Martha H. of Jonesboro writes:

We are transpants from California.
With the threat of tornados in our area why doesn't someone talk about safe rooms or storm shelters? It would be a benifical topic for residents who need more information & where to inquire about them.