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Hurricane Sally Update

Hurricane Sally made landfall as a Category 2 storm near Gulf Shores, AL at approximately 4:45am CT this morning (9/16) with sustained winds of 105mph. A slow-moving storm, clocking in at 3mph, Sally was downgraded by 8am CT with winds at 90mph. Sally continues to pummel southern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle and has prompted water rescues, power outages, downed trees and catastrophic flooding. Country Aircheck touches base with Country stations in affected areas."

• iHeartMedia WKSJ/Mobile, AL PD Bill Black: “It’s been a long 36 hours and more to follow. [WKSJ] has remained on-air during the storm with regular updates all night and this morning. We aired local updates and continue to update our listeners on latest weather activity. It’s not over. Plus, we are assessing damages, flooding, power outages and downed trees and power lines. The staff is, as always, knocking it out of the park.

"For those who have visited our beautiful beaches in the past, they have been devastated by this storm’s surge. Even our favorite spot, the world-famous Flora-Bama, has taken a major hit. But we will persist.” See photos of the nearby beaches on ‘KSJ’s website here.

• iHeartMedia WKSJ/Mobile, AL & WKNN/Biloxi, MS Promo Dir./on-air personality Johnna Nixon: “It’s been a rough time, and as the footage rolls in, it’s looking worse. Bill [Black] stayed overnight. Our staff is all safe, but approximately 200,000 people in the area are without power, and the beach is wrecked. We are doing full coverage on all of our stations today and continue to cover road closures – Mobile and Pensacola have damaged bridges – and curfews, which have been set by the Mayor of Mobile. Flooding is currently the major concern.”

• Gulf South WTVY/Dothan, AL PD/midday host “Big Rick” Daniels: “Our stations are 100% operational, and our engineering team drove in last night from Meridian, MS to assist with generator backups. As of right now, we are seeing severe flooding, thousands of power outages, high wind gusts and remaining tornado threats. Our full on-air team has offered wall-to-wall coverage since 3am today informing our listeners and communities. The WTVY staff – Jerome & DC, John Garrett, Kato and I – are also simulcasting on our sister stations, [Classic Country] WDJR & [Top 40] WKMX.”

• iHeartMedia WPAP/Panama City, FL morning co-host Tess Connell: “[Morning host] Dr. Shane went in last night and started a live broadcast at 9pm as serious tornadic activity and rain began in our area. Throughout the night, we had no less than 24 tornado and flash flood warnings as cells with rotation would pop up and then dissipate before anything touched down. After Hurricane Michael less than two years ago, the whole community had a restless night. The worst we’ve had to deal with, though, has been the torrential rain, flash flooding and storm surge that was a great deal higher than expected.

"All stations are currently up and running, and the staff is safe. Shane simulcast on all stations in the cluster for several hours last night, and we took the morning show live on WPAP focusing on live calls and updates from the community as well as road closures. We spoke to city officials and the chief meteorologist at our news partner, WJHG-TV, with the latest weather updates. By the time we wrapped the morning show at 11am, the last outer band was passing through, we had reached high tide and things were starting to calm down. Now we are waiting for the waters to recede and see what the damage is, but the concern is really for our neighbors to the west where Pensacola and Mobile were flooded much worse.”

If affected, share updates on your market and how your stations are responding here.