Grounded tower knocks station off air

Engineers scrambled Tuesday to find the best way solution to getting KVTK-AM’s radio signal broadcasting again after the station’s tower collapsed Monday.  (Photo by David Lias)

Engineers scrambled Tuesday to find the best solution to getting KVTK-AM’s radio signal broadcasting again after the station’s tower collapsed Monday.
(Photo by David Lias)

By David Lias

david.lias@plaintalk.net

Listeners to ESPN Radio 1570 KVTK-AM of Yankton will need to be a bit patient.

A Monday afternoon accident has temporarily knocked the station off the air. Engineers and other staffers of Five Star Communications, which also owns KVHT-FM Classic Hits 106.3, were scrambling Tuesday to find the best way to begin broadcasting again after their radio tower collapsed Monday afternoon.

The tower, which was 309 feet tall, is situated in the middle of what appears to be a small, grassy field located about five miles west of Vermillion. A man cutting the grass Monday afternoon clipped one of the tower’s guy-wires, causing it to collapse shortly after 4 p.m.

“The tower is on the ground,” said Jeff Fuller, owner of the two radio stations, Tuesday morning. “Engineers are working now to do whatever we need to do to get us back on the air.”

No one was injured. A small building located a short distance from the tower’s base was not damaged, as the collapsing metal snaked its way around the structure without striking it.

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