WRGC Radio sustains damage caused by high wind

Thursday night’s high winds blew trees and debris which caused power outtages to over 600 residences in Jackson County and also to WRGC Radio.  The wind caused a Sycamore tree to break off about 20 feet in the air and plug down across the stations auxillary satellite dish, ripped the cable, telephone and electrical utility lines off the building, and caused damage to the station’s primary satellite receiver causing the station to loose NBC News, CNBC News, and the North Carolina News Network News. Duke Energy cut the power off the building at 9:45 Friday Morning due to safety issues from the exposed wires caused by  cut into the protective shield when the weatherhead was broken off the building. An immediate and intense search for an electrician who would tackle the project was launched. Pete Poppins with Poppins Electrical Services in Bryson City agreed to come in on his day off, with wind chill factors below zero, and make the repairs. Peter was able to locate a new external meter base from a local vendor, a Waynesville supplier delivered the heavy electrical service entrance cables (400 amps)  to Sylva to expedite the repair. County Electrical Inspector Jim Buchannan assisted with the final installations to the station would be ready for Duke Power to reconnect the lines when the station power request came back to the top of the work order list. The power was restored Friday Night but the station came back on the air Saturday morning at 7:00 a-m because there is a specific sequence for bringing the equipment back on line, especially the computers which schedule all the station’s programming. Technicians came from Asheville on Saturday to make repairs to the satellite receivers and by eleven a-m the station was able to again receive the news and programming feeds fro,m the different networks. Morris Broadband repaired the cable service on Friday afternoon making that service ready when the electrical service was restored. By mid-day Saturday servives were back to normal except a huge tree is still resting in the completely destroyed auxillary satellite dish. “Hopefully the insurance company will be as cooperative as the other professionals have been, I can’t thank Poppins Electrical Services from Bryson City enough, and the county inspections office really went the extra mile to help us get back on line. Without their help we would have been out of service till next Thursday.” said Owner Roy Burnette.