Update on Two Out-Of-Service NOAA Weather Radios in Central Illinois


BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WCIA) – We have an update on two out-of-service NOAA Weather Radio Towers in Central Illinois.

Last week we told you the Bloomington NOAA Radio Tower KZZ65 went out-of-service suddenly. That tower covers residents in McLean and De Witt Counties.

The National Weather Service Office in Lincoln says the tower has been struck by lightning, causing significant damage to several components. That means the radio is offline and unavailable for use.

They are working to restore the broadcast services, but until they can get additional inspections and climbers up the tower, there is no estimated date for return-to-service.

This comes as the NOAA Tower in Champaign County remains offline, but is expected to come back online as early as Friday. The tower has been offline since early 2020.

In April, it was announced that WCIA is partnering with the National Weather Service to host the life-saving technology on our broadcast tower. Then, in early May an announcement came that engineering and inspection of our tower deemed it suitable to host, and the next step was to get climbers on the tower.

The National Weather Service says that weather permitting, tower climbers will be at the WCIA 3 Tower later this week to install the transmitter. Once that is complete, they will perform testing of the signal.

An update could come as early as Wednesday letting us know if they were able to get up the tower, or if they have to push back the highly anticipated launch of the Champaign Tower.

We’ll keep you updated on that online, on the WCIA 3 App and on WCIA 3 News through the week.

With the chance for stronger storms in the forecast later this week, check our WCIA 3 Weather Team’s latest forecast, and review your severe weather safety plan this week before storms arrive. You can also learn more by watching our WCIA 3 Severe Weather Special which aired in April.

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