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Mike Hotaling, “Tornado Warning” – WXCR “Classic Rock 102.3” Albany | May 30, 1999

Mother nature has not been nice to much of the country this Spring, with one of the worst tornado outbreaks in over 25 years in parts of the South, flooding in the nation’s midsection, It’s just been awful. So, what happens when things turn ugly, and you’re the jock on the air?

Contributor Mike Hotaling had just such an experience back in 1999 during the Mechanicsville (NY) tornado that wiped out parts of the small Albany suburb. Hotaling describes his experience this way:

“Back 15 years ago or so when Rock Radio still had “live” jocks on the weekend, I was on the air. The tape starts out innocently enough. The weather is beautiful, we have jocks out on remote, I’m putting phone drops on the air, etc.. By the end of the tape, though, you will hear that the weather has changed and a tornado is blowing through the area. You will notice I am out of breath and very scared at that point. I had been running back and forth from the EBS monitor trying to update the listeners. You will also hear the station drop off and on the air when the storm blows by our transmitter site. Eventually, we found out that it was indeed an F-3 tornado that struck the town of Mechanicville NY that totally flattened a famous furniture store and some houses there. Its a weekend I will never forget!!!!

Do you have a similar story to tell? Feel free to tell it in the comment section below, or on our Facebook fan page, http://www.facebook.com/airchexx.







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6 Comments


  1. Today, the station is Top-40 WKKF.

    And chances are, it’s automated, satellite, and/or voicetracked 24/7.

    Reply

  2. I remember this station. Mason and Sheehan had emigrated from PYX 106 (PYX still existing, BTW!).

    BEFORE WXCR, the frequency was Satellite Hard Rock Z-Rock. AFTER WXCR Classic Rock is WKKF Top 40 Pop which still airs.

    Morosic (heard in this Podcast at one point) is now at Q103, having moved from the defunct (as of last year) New Edge 104.9.

    And I remember the tornado. One wild, scary day!

    Reply

  3. This actually occurred on May 31, 1998.

    Reply

  4. Right. Happened 1998 on a Sunday.

    Reply

  5. Where does the tornado warning coverage start? I only heard 2 shifts of regular weekend programming.

    Reply

  6. The tornado reports begin at approximately 44 minutes in [or, a little over 4 minutes left].

    Reply

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