Preliminary Hurricane Irma Ratings Show CNN Was Most-Watched

By Chris Ariens 

We are starting to see preliminary Nielsen ratings during coverage of Hurricane Irma. As we’ve been reporting, full Nielsen data is delayed due the storm, as Nielsen’s processing center is outside Tampa, in Oldsmar, Fla. Nielsen released metered market data for Sunday as Irma roared ashore, making its first landfall in the Keys just after 9 a.m. and its second landfall in Marco Island at 3:30.

Among the cable news channels, CNN led the day in both total viewers and the A25-54 demo. These numbers are the household rating from the 56 metered markets (roughly 80 percent of the national sample). The A25-54 audience is the top 25 markets (roughly 40 percent of the national sample). Atlanta, Ft. Myers-Naples, Jacksonville, Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa-St. Pete, and West Palm Beach are not included.

  • Total Day 3a-3a (HH rating / A25-54 viewers)

CNN – 1.8 / 527,000
Fox News – 1.5 / 260,000
MSNBC 1.1 / 195,000

  • Prime time 8p-11p

CNN – 2.2 / 744,000
Fox News 1.6 / 279,000
MSNBC – 1.3 / 258,000