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Florida Station Faces Fine for Nighttime Violation

WIPC didn’t reduce power, commission says

A Florida AM station faces a $4,000 fine for not switching to nighttime power.

The FCC issued a notice of apparent liability to Super W Media Group for WIPC(AM) in Lake Wales, Fla. The station, at 1280 kHz, is licensed for 1 kW nondirectional by day and 540 watts directional at night.

The Tampa office of the FCC monitored the station on two occasions last May and June, and said it didn’t change field strength either time.

On a subsequent visit, according to the commission’s summary, the owner “admitted that the station’s equipment, which automatically reduces power and changes the antenna’s directional pattern at night, malfunctioned about one or two weeks before. He stated that he had been manually reducing power at night, but claimed he forgot to do so the evening of June 15, 2011. He did not say anything regarding changing the antenna’s directional pattern at night.”

The FCC considers the violation willful and repeated, and it proposed a $4,000 penalty. The station has 30 days to pay or appeal.