Preparedness and collaboration kept CMG communities informed during hurricanes
When Hurricanes Harvey and Irma carved their destructive paths across Texas and Florida within a week of each other, Cox Media Group's keen focus on preparedness and collaboration across markets and media platforms ensured that its audiences continued to count on CMG for the critical news and information they needed during the disasters. CMG had round-the-clock, emergency coverage in eight Texas and Florida markets – providing a vital link to communities during the critical window before, during and after these hurricanes.
"After ensuring that our teams and their families were all safe, our mission was to serve our communities by relaying vital, lifesaving information to our viewers, listeners and readers," said CMG President Kim Guthrie. "The preparedness of our engineers and operations leaders paid off – with generator power, fuel, personnel and even MRE's (Meals Ready to Eat) for our small but mighty teams who went without sleep, worked onsite and in the field to continue to report the news and weather. We are so incredibly proud of all of our dedicated employees, as well as the extended Digital, National Content Desk and the Washington News Bureau teams and other CMG markets who supported them throughout this ordeal!"
Guthrie added that CMG commits a great deal of time throughout the year with its security team conducting tabletop exercises so that its media brands can be prepared for disasters like this and to never lose the ability to broadcast or publish the news.
An unprecedented number of CMG properties were in the path of these two monster storms, as well as in Georgia when Irma became a tropical storm:
- Houston: The New 93Q, Country Legends 97.1FM, and The Eagle 106.9 & 107.5
- San Antonio: 99.5 KISS, KONO 101.1, The Eagle 106.7, Country Legends KKYX 680 AM 104,9 FM, and Y100
- Austin: Austin American Statesman
- Miami: 99JAMZ, Easy93.1, Hits97.3, and HOT105
- Orlando: News 96.5, K92.3, 98.9 WMMO, Star 94.5, Power 95.3, 107.3 Solo Exitos, WFTV Ch. 9 and Central Florida's 27 WRDQ
- Tampa: HOT 101.5, 97X, 102.5 The Bone, Magic 94.9, 107.3 The Eagle and 105.5 The Dove
- Jacksonville: News 104.5, The Eagle 96.9, Easy 106.5, HOT99.5, 95.1WAPE, X102.9, Power 106.1 and Action News Jax FOX30 and CBS47 TV
- West Palm Beach: The Palm Beach Post and Palm Beach Daily News
- Atlanta: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, MundoHispanico, News 95.5 FM AM 750 WSB, 97.1 The River, B98.5, Your Country Georgia 106.1/107.1, KISS 104.1 FM, and WSB TV Ch. 2 Action News
- Athens: 960 The Ref, WGAU 98.7 FM & AM1340, Magic 102.1 FM, 103.7 Chuck FM, Power 100.1 and Your Country Georgia 106.1/107.1
"I am especially proud of our two converged markets in Orlando and Jacksonville, where we have TV and Radio properties," said CMG Executive VP Bill Hendrich who recently was named to oversee all of CMG's Florida broadcast markets. "In both markets, the TV and radio stations worked together before, during and after the storm to provide unmatched news coverage to millions of viewers and listeners."
All CMG employees could get their families to safety, and CMG's media teams kicked into high gear, safely guiding the communities through some of the worst hurricanes in history.
"There will be many more weeks of clean up as the full extent of damage reveals itself across these markets, and CMG will continue to step up for our communities, our audiences, advertisers and our employees," added Guthrie. "Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with everyone impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma."