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Cooler Temps Could Ease L.A.-Area Blazes

Reports indicate broadcast towers still OK

Cooler temperatures could help firefighters fight growing blazes in California Tuesday, although broadcast, cellular and other communications transmitters on Mount Wilson remain threatened.

Hot, dry conditions in the Los Angeles area have helped fuel the flames, which have consumed more than 133,000 acres statewide. The Forest Service said the wildfire remains only 5 percent contained, and officials say the fire will have to run its course, reports sister publication Television Broadcast.

Above Ground Level says Mount Wilson is home to 22 Los Angeles TV stations and 25 FM radio stations, as well as police and fire dispatch. There are just shy of 30 structures near the summit, according to TowerSource, a directory of antenna tower sites. American Tower owns seven of those sites.

One of those stations, KPCC-FM on 89.3 MHz, was ready to switch to a transmitter on Lookout Mountain if necessary, courtesy of KUSC. Engineers from both stations worked overnight to make sure that local news and information will continue to reach Southland communities. Fire coverage on KPCC includes reports from its own reporters and reports from KPBS, San Diego as well as from sister station KNOW, St. Paul, Minn.

Southern California Public Radio President Bill Davis thanked of all the stations that helped KPCC and said “We intend to be there for them in their moment of need.”

Telos put out the word that it has put aside a supply of FM audio processors in case anyone needs emergency shipments. “The Linear Acoustic guys are ready to help on the TV side too. We have techs ready to fly in if need be,” according to an e-mail from Axia Audio Marketing Director Clark Novak.