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FCC Upholds Mt. Wilson RFR Fines

FCC Upholds Mt. Wilson RFR Fines

The FCC reaffirmed fines of $10,000 to three stations for exceeding the RF exposure limits from towers located on Mt. Wilson, near Los Angeles. The commission first levied the fines in 2003 against Radio One, licensee of FM radio station KKBT(FM); Infinity Broadcasting, licensee of KRTH(FM); and Telemundo, licensee of TV station KWHY(TV).
If the exposure limits are exceeded due to emissions of multiple transmitters, the FCC says all the licensees that share the responsibility to get the RF emissions down to an acceptable level.
During an inspection in 2002 the FCC found the main antenna farm was not fully fenced or gated. The public can get close to the site, because it’s near a park and post office, said the agency.
“Conservatively, the RFR fields exceeded the … limits for the general population by over 50%,” said the commission in its decision.
The licensees installed fencing, but on a subsequent inspection in 2003, field agents found the gate open.
In its reply, Infinity said the field agents did not tell KRTH they thought it was exceeding the RF exposure limits. Infinity also said it had no legal right to control the non-compliant area. The company wanted the fines divided up by the percentage over the RFR limits each station was responsible for.
Radio One said in its own studies, KKBT was not over the limit.
Telemundo said the field agents couldn’t be certain of their measurements “because the margin of uncertainty is too great given the broadband methodology used.”
The commission rejected all the arguments and said the fine stands. It encouraged the licensees to work together to mitigate high RF emissions.