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Thurs 6/20 8:15pm: WRKF's FM/HD broadcasts are operating with reduced power due to an equipment fault. Online listening is unaffected.

Reduced over-the-air operations due to tower work

WRKF's broadcast tower.
Adam Vos

UPDATE: WRKF's over-the-air signals are again operating normally following earlier maintenance. Thank you for your patience.

Throughout the first half of June 2024, WRKF will be forced to periodically reduce its operations to accommodate ongoing structural and maintenance work that our landlord is performing on the tower we broadcast from.

While this may understandably cause some inconvenience for our listeners, we are obligated to respond in this way in the interest of the safety of the workers performing this work on our tower. Thankfully, we are prepared with a backup facility that makes it possible for us to broadcast despite these maintenance operations. While our backup facility keeps us on the air and serves the majority of our listeners, some listeners may have trouble receiving our signal during this period.

If you are among the minority of listeners who are having trouble receiving WRKF or you've noticed a reduction in the quality of the signal you hear on WRKF during these work periods, read along to find out what you can do to improve your chances of receiving WRKF.

The basics

Cause: Climbers are working on WRKF's tower.
Response: We must not transmit from this tower while workers are climbing the tower.
When: See below for a log of periods during which this work has forced us to our backup facilities.
Impacts: HD Radio: WRKF's HD channels will not operate during these work periods. WRKF's HD channels include the HD version of our main channel at 89.3 HD1, and WRKF Classical on 89.3 HD2. FM Radio: Additionally, WRKF's traditional FM signal will be broadcasting from a different location with less power.
What it means for you: During work periods, you will not be able to receive WRKF Classical on 89.3 HD2 or WRKF's HD1 signal. You may notice a reduction in quality of the signal you hear. In outlying areas or with some radios, you may not be able to receive our FM signal. You can listen online; online listening is unaffected.

What you can do

To improve radio reception, use a radio with a superior antenna and with digital tuning; use a radio positioned outdoors or adjacent to a window facing in the direction of the intersection of Interstate 10 and Siegen Lane in Baton Rouge. The radio in your car is probably capable of meeting all of these criteria. Radios from which you can expect inferior reception performance include clock radios, radios with inefficient or minimal wire antennas, radios located indoors away from windows, radios located adjacent to other electronics, and portable or table-top radios with antennas not optimally adjusted.

If your analogue FM radio has analogue tuning instead of digital tuning, then you may need to adjust your tuning slightly to re-tune to the station. If your radio has the applicable option, turning off the automatic frequency control of "AFC" setting may help.

If you're ultimately unable to listen to WRKF's signal on the radio either because you wish to hear WRKF Classical on HD2 or because your radio's reception conditions are too weak to receive our reduced-power FM broadcast, you can access either channel online or on the WRKF App. Listen at wrkf.org or classical.wrkf.org. Click the play button, or click "All Streams" to select a different channel. Download the WRKF App for your smartphone or mobile device for Apple or Android from your respective app store. Look for "WRKF Public Media App;" it will have our logo. It's free. Open the app and click the play button at the bottom, or first select the channel you want to hear at the top of the screen then click play. You can also hear us on the NPR app or by asking your smart speaker to "Play WRKF" or to "Play WRKF Classical."

The details

The following is a log of periods during which this work has resulted in the described reductions/outages to our signal, in reverse chronological order. If you are experiencing reception issues and the problems you are experiencing correspond with this schedule, then the issues we have described are the cause.

  • Thursday, June 13 from 6:45am to 5pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Wednesday, June 12 ar 2:10pm to Thursday, June 13 from 6:45am (HD/FM reduced power);
  • Wednesday, June 12 from 6:50am to 2:10pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Tuesday, June 11 at 5pm to Wednesday, June 12 at 6:50am (HD/FM reduced power);
  • Tuesday, June 11 from 8am to 5pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Monday, June 10 at 1pm through Tuesday, June 11 at 8am (HD/FM reduced power);
  • Monday, June 10 from 7:15am to 1pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Saturday, June 8 at 3:30pm to Monday, June 10 at 7:15am (HD/FM reduced power);
  • Saturday, June 8 from 6am to 3:30pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Friday, June 7 at 5:15pm to Saturday, June 8 at 6am (HD/FM reduced power);
  • Friday, June 7 from 6:30am to 5:15pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Thursday, June 6 at 2:50pm to Friday, June 7 at 6:30am (HD/FM reduced power);
  • Thursday, June 6 from 6:50am to 2:50pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Wednesday, June 5 from 6:55am to 8:45am (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Tuesday, June 4 from 8:30am to 2:55pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Monday, June 3 from 9;50am to 12:00pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Monday, June 3 from 7:15am to 9:50am (HD/FM off the air);
  • Sunday, June 1 from 9:05am to 2:55pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site);
  • Friday, May 31 from 10:45am to 12:35pm (HD off, FM reduced power at alternative site).

For HD Radio listeners: If you have an HD radio, your radio likely will automatically fall-back to our main channel on our traditional FM signal. If you are listening to our main channel on HD1, you may notice additional noise in your signal because of this. If you are listening to WRKF Classical on HD2, you will not have access to this channel over-the-air on your radio while the work is in progress.

Thankfully, WRKF maintains an alternate site that we can broadcast from when circumstances interrupt our capacity to broadcast from our primary transmitter site. Maintaining a backup transmitter is an important component of emergency preparedness and also benefits us in other non-disaster scenarios that might affect the operability of our primary transmission location, such as what we are experiencing now. Unfortunately, this backup site does not broadcast in HD and operates with less power and from a lower height than our primary transmitter. As a result, when we operate from this site, listeners in outlying areas and who otherwise have suboptimal reception conditions should expect an impaired signal. Listeners within the Baton Rouge metro or who have superior reception conditions will be able to receive our backup signal. However listeners outside of the Baton Rouge metro or who have radios or antennas that do not efficiently receive our signal may not be able to receive our backup signal or may hear additional noise in the signal when we utilize this backup site. Some listeners may be able to re-aim their antennas to better receive our backup site. The instructions above may help with reception for some of these listeners. WRKF maintains redundant internet service at our studios to ensure our internet stream remains available to listeners in the face of a range of circumstances.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we respond to these situations. Feel free to contact Operations Director Adam Vos at adam@wrkf.org with any further technical concerns.

Adam is responsible for coordinating WRKF's programming and making sure everything you hear on the radio runs smoothly. He is Newscast Editor for the WRKF/WWNO Newsroom. Adam is also the Baton Rouge-based host for Louisiana Considered, our daily regional news program, and is frequently the local voice afternoons on All Things Considered.