Strange Story of DC's Lost AM Radio Station Still Transmitting Road Closures From 2013

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by W0PV, Mar 6, 2021.

ad: L-HROutlet
ad: l-rl
ad: L-MFJ
ad: l-BCInc
ad: Subscribe
ad: abrind-2
ad: Left-2
ad: Left-3
  1. WA9CWX

    WA9CWX Ham Member QRZ Page

    My idea is it was just someone in the Trump administration paying respect to Obama.........Not as likely as the forgetting to throw the switch theory.....
     
  2. KD3XB

    KD3XB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    It is not a new phenomenon. Back in college in the late 60's swapping stories over beers a radio/TV major told the following. His summer job was at a small station on Maryland's eastern shore. He worked the grave yard shift and some point during the shift he had to play to old CONELRAD testt message. While that was playing he then had to dashed out the station door, across a field and at least one fence to the transmitter and record the power output. He prided himself on no dead air time. He returned to the station to hear, "This is not a test this is an actual emergency please tune to . . . " He waited for the flood of calls. It never came.
     
    KE8QEP, WB9YTG, KR3DX and 1 other person like this.
  3. KD7YVV

    KD7YVV Ham Member QRZ Page

    CONELRAD, I remember seeing a Twilight Zone episode that mentioned that.
    It's my thought that the more things are used, the more they are ignored.
    For instance, car alarms. Nowadays most people hear a car alarm and ignore it.
    As for the EAS tones, I've been around people when the EAS tones go off
    and they are ignored. I always stop and pay attention, even when it's just a test.
    Nowadays with an instant connection in your pocket, it seems most people forget that
    those little trackers rely on cell towers. Granted, during Katrina they
    had some cell sites back up and running within a day, but I guess it's just habit for me
    to rely on good old fashioned radio. A crystal set will work, needs no batteries, and
    will run as long as there is RF energy to make it work. The TIS at both ends of the band
    can help in remote areas and even urban ones. As I typed in an earlier post, I like to
    broacast band DX. As a bonus, I even get to hear lightning sometimes.
    If you go to Google and type When Radio Was, you'll find a site that lists a lot of
    old shows and stations that broadcast them. AM is not dead, just lost to the younger
    generation. Like ham radio, "people still do that? " Why yes, yes they do.
     
    K9DWB and KR3DX like this.
  4. K1XS

    K1XS Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Similar issue in Connecticut in 2005. The test TV EAS message sent by all the stations in the state inadvertently said evacuate the state. No reason was given. At first blame was placed on hackers; an employee later admitted to entering the wrong code. A study afterward showed the message reached 11% of state residents and the most common reaction was to change channels or seek confirmation from friends or neighbors. 911 call centers were not flooded with phone calls and only a few people decided to evacuate.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2005_Connecticut_false_evacuation_alert
     
  5. KC9TNH

    KC9TNH Ham Member QRZ Page

    Interesting story. Likely missed it somewhere in the pages & pages, but I'd be curious to know make/model specifics of this thing that just sat there like a good Golden Retriever for 8 years, doing what it was supposed to do with - apparently - nary a hiccup.
     
  6. K0DD

    K0DD Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The more they are used the more they are ignored.... as stated..^^^.. That's why we will likely Die by a giant F5 Twister...! The best alert system is the one across the Cell System. But every Amber alert in Minneapolis wakes us up 200 miles away in Rural Iowa. The last thing some runaway parent with a kid under each arm from MSP would want to do is bang on OUR front door at 3:15 after we were sat up in bed 15 minutes earlier.... If the Russians are at the end of the street check back in at 6:00...
     
  7. W1AMA

    W1AMA Ham Member QRZ Page

    This is/was a Travelers' Information Station (TIS) and it's probably listed on the FCC website.

    Some MW DX hobbyists try to log them - and - you can. As I might have said in an earlier post - before the FCC opened up 1610-1700 for MW broadcast, there were TIS stations at 1610 - 1620 - and in Massachusetts, with effort, I could pick up the TIS station at Wood's Hole, MA (around 100 miles from me) and the parking lot at JFK airport (around 190 miles).

    Today - on 1710 - during sunrise - I can pick up a TIS station from northern New Jersey. Quite often, when traveling in normal times, I do flip to them if I see them listed on highway signs - Connecticut has a very effective traffic reporting system on theirs.
     
  8. KJ7TTZ

    KJ7TTZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    You think going off the air coincides with moving out of old buildings after new PD build was built? I was in Coronado from 85-03 before transferring with Navy. We had a Senior Chief in my Squadron that worked on the department, part time, the name eludes me.
     
  9. N3HGB

    N3HGB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Winner of this thread!
     
  10. K0DD

    K0DD Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Hey, While we're busy discussing weird stuff... I was working out of town and needed something at the local car parts store... It might have been a NAPA or maybe a different store. Oh somebody walked off with my gas cap.... Well walking from the parking lot to the front door I passed a tower. It had a chunk of RG-8 dangling down from a Business band antenna at the top but that wasn't the original antenna. This was before my cell phone had a camera and I wasn't carrying a camera. I looked down first and then looked up.... up about a 120-140 foot tower... The car parts store used the thing for delivery trucks. It was painted red/white and the BASE was an Insulated base... A self supporting tower. It was very old. Three legs and a CENTER insulator setup pushing the tower down into the three outer insulators.

    I remember when we put the 160m tower up at the farm it was 130' tall and we had resonated it as a 5/8 wave for giggles to see where it went.... and it just happened to TUNE at very near 2.7 MHZ.... Working in different but select major towns each one of those car parts stores had one of those towers. Nobody inside the stores knew what the towers were used for before the NAPA moved into the buildings... But they knew that was their dispatch radio circa 20 years ago. The Way Old Police band back in the late 20's and in some cases into the 40's was around 2.5-2.7 MHz so I started doing internet research on that stuff. This was in the state of South Dakota, and SDHP as in State Radio went right to 40MHZ and they don't list anything for an original 2.5-7 mhz State Radio before that. Also the history of Various Cop shops in those towns don't talk much about the history of Medium Wave police radios. There is a list of the original police systems around the country that was on the internet the last time I tried to research this decades ago...

    I wish I had been able to take photos of those towers their Business band guy just jumpered across the base insulators for Lightning protection. Any body else ever see something like that? I was Intrigued.

    Erika DD
     

Share This Page