WEAU’s Tower Collapses, Knocking Station Off the Air

By Andrew Gauthier Comment

WEAU‘s transmitting tower unexpectedly collapsed on Tuesday night, knocking the NBC-affiliate off the air.

The 2,000-foot tower, located in Fairchild, WI, stands just 25 feet this morning. Luckily no one was injured in the incident and officials are still investigating what caused the collapse.

WEAU’s chief engineer, Ron Wiedemeier, originally thought that there may have been a power outage at the tower after the station’s signal unexpectedly went dark a little after 9:00 p.m. last night. As Wiedemeier drove out to investigate, local officials informed the station that the tower was no more.

“It just basically made me sick to my stomach,” Wiedemeier said of hearing the news.

Since the collapse, WEAU has been using its website to keep viewers in western Wisconsin informed about the incident as well as other local news. WEAU’s newscasts are now available for streaming online.  The station is currently trying to figure out a way to broadcast NBC programming to the area.

>Update: WEAU is now back on the air, broadcasting on a digital subchannel of Eau Claire ABC-affiliate WQOW.