Charlotte’s rock radio station was forced off the air during the storm

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title=wpil_keyword_linkstation had to tune elsewhere this past weekend.” title=”Fans looking to hear Mick Jagger, left, Keith Richards and the Rolling Stones on a Charlotte-area classic rock radio station had to tune elsewhere this past weekend.” loading=”lazy”/>

Fans looking to hear Mick Jagger, left, Keith Richards and the Rolling Stones on a Charlotte-area classic rock radio station had to tune elsewhere this past weekend.

jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

Charlotte-area rock fans are listening 95.7 FM “The RideOver the weekend they might have encountered radio silence and not their favorite tracks from Aerosmith, The Doors, The Rolling Stones and other classic rock bands.

The independent radio station was knocked off the air by a lightning strike that damaged its antenna and transmitter during a heavy storm on Saturday, chief executive Dave Lingafelt told the Charlotte Observer.

The storms caused 3,000 power outages, nearly 600 flight delays and a short “shelter-in-place” order during Charlotte FC’s game at Bank of America Stadium, the Observer previously reported.

As of Tuesday morning, “The Ride” has been back on the air and is expected to return to full power (100,000 watts) in the “very near future,” Lingafelt said.

The pathis headquartered in Newton, Catawba County and is licensed to serve Hickory, according to the station’s website.

Although its broadcast signal was cut, the station’s live feed was unaffected.

‘The Ride’ does not ‘go away’

The station has suffered numerous lightning strikes over the years, but nothing has caused so much damage, Lingafelt said.

“It happens sooner or later to all radio stations,” he said. “The question is, how much damage is done?”

Lingafelt said the station has backup equipment — including transmitters and antennas — but sometimes heavy storms can still cause it to go off the air.

The station received “hundreds and hundreds” of messages and calls about the outage, Lingafelt said.

“It’s always gratifying to know that people care,” he says. “They were afraid ‘The Ride’ would go away, it’s not!”

This story was originally published August 10, 2022 6:20 a.m.

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Jonathan Limehouse is a breaking news reporter and covers all the major events in the Charlotte area. He covered a litany of other beats from public safety, education, public health and sports. He is a proud graduate of UNC Charlotte and a native of Raleigh.


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