In what may be the first AM nighttime IBOC interference complaint filed with the FCC, WYSL(AM), Rochester, N.Y. claims adjacent channel IBOC noise from WBZ(AM), Boston is interfering with WYSL’s nighttime signal.
WYSL operates DA-3, with 20 kW daytime, 13.2 kW critical hours and 500 watts at night on 1040 kHz. WYSL is licensed to Avon, N.Y., about 25 miles south of Rochester. Robert Savage owns WYSL; he tells me he also worked many years as a programmer in larger markets for larger group owners.
CBS Radio’s WBZ operates unlimited hours DA-1 with 50 kW on 1030 kHz.
In his complaint, Savage is claiming adjacent-channel skywave to co-channel groundwave interference. The multi-page complaint includes an engineering affidavit from communications systems engineer and consultant Barry McLarnon.
WYSL personnel spent more than 100 hours and drove more than 700 miles in field tests gathering data to back up its complaint, Savage said.
In the complaint, Savage writes: “If allowed to continue unmitigated, the IBOC interference is likely to cause loss of advertising revenue and diminishment of WYSL’s market value as a broadcast property.”
Savage says he could potentially lose about $100,000 in nighttime ads for sports events this winter due to interference.
Neither WBZ or the FCC returned requests for comment.
Key to this case is whether the alleged interference is within WYSL’s protected contour; WYSL says it is.
This could be the first AM nighttime IBOC-related interference complaint the commission has received since stations were allowed to leave their digital transmitters on 24/7 on Sept. 14.
Audio Division Chief Peter Doyle said in September that the agency had received no such complaints, and as of earlier this week, he said that hadn’t changed.