This week, I want to discuss our school closing system called "I-Alert" (short for "Information Alert"). We have the most comprehensive system in Northeast Ohio. Together, with a number of radio stations and news outlets, we reach the greatest number of people in NE Ohio.
The I-Alert system was developed as a free public service in tandem with Clear Channel Radio to allow admininstrators of our area private & public schools and select other educational & religious institutions to get their closings on the air in the fastest way possible.
Each facility is provided with an unique password that allows them to access the I-Alert system right over the telephone. The adminstrator can select from several options to indicate their emergency situation to be broadcast.
Some of these options include "Closed," "Delayed 2 hours", "No Evening Classes" and "No After School Activities." AM Closings are cleared from the system at 9:35 AM, Afternoon closings at 7:35 PM and next day closings should be called in after 8 PM.
This information is instantly fed into our Master Control "I-Alert" system which signals to the operator on duty that new alerts have arrived and are ready to air. This person can then squeeze our programming back to instantly get the information on for our viewers.
During newscasts, we also have the capability in the control room to squeeze back our newscasts and to run the I-Alerts as long as needed. Monday, for example - we aired school closings continuously through the newscasts and other programming due to the more than 600 cancellations for Tuesday Morning.
Our "I-Alerts" also appear on several other outlets:
www.wkyc.com, www.wtam.com, www.wmvx.com, www.wmji.com, www.wgar.com, www.kisscleveland.com, www.wmms.com, www.640whlo.com, www.wkdd.com,
I-ALERT RADIO NETWORK:
WTAM, WMJI, WGAR, WAKS, WMMS, WHLO, WKDD, WARF, WCPN, WCRF & WCLV.
I-ALERT CABLE OUTLETS:
The Akron Canton News & Weather Plus (Time Warner Digital Channel 522 - check other cable outlets for specific channel information).