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Oklahoma City Stations Praised For Coverage of Devastating Tornado

Oklahoma City stations have been live around the clock in the aftermath of Monday’s devastating tornado. The stations have been praised for their “thoughtful, professional, experienced” reporting during and after the twister.

All four stations were live during the storm, with meteorologists and anchors issuing repeated warnings for people in the storm’s path to take shelter.

“You folks in Moore, grab whatever it is you need to grab and you need to go underground. Bottom line: grab your kids, grab your loved ones, grab your friends,” KFOR chief meteorologist Mike Morgan said shortly before the tornado hit. “And just get out of the way.”

In her press conference Monday night, Oklahoma governor Mary Fallin thanked the local media for early warnings of the tornado threat.

“The media’s done a superb job over the last few days of keeping people informed about the conditions, especially our weathermen and those that have been on the ground, driving, following and tracking the storm itself,” Fallin said.

The local stations’ coverage was available online via live stream. Stations were praised by the Columbia Journalism Review, which noted stations provided “life-saving information before the tornado, essential reporting afterward.” Read more

Massive Tornado Sweeps Through Oklahoma City

A massive, mile-wide tornado ripped through Oklahoma City shortly after 3pmCT Monday, leaving a path of destruction in the southern part of the city. Local stations in Oklahoma City began following the threat closely during the 2 p.m. hour.

All four stations gave regular updates throughout normal morning programming. CBS affiliate KWTV was the first station to go to wall-to-wall with the tornado threat at 2:01 p.m., with meteorologist Michael Armstrong leading coverage.

NBC affiliate KFOR and ABC affiliate KOCO both broke in with continuing coverage at 2:12 p.m. Chief meteorologist Mike Morgan was on the air for KFOR and chief meteorologist Damon Lane led coverage for KOCO. “We’re going to stay on the air here for awhile because storms are developing quite rapidly,” Morgan said.

KOKH chief meteorologist Jeff George took over wall-to-wall coverage on the Fox affiliate at 2:30 p.m.

The Oklahoma City metro area is under a tornado warning until 10 p.m. tonight.

Verdict Reached in Jodi Arias Trial

A verdict has been reached in the trial of Jodi Arias, who is accused of murdering her boyfriend Travis Alexander in Arizona.

In Phoenix, ABC affiliate KNXV was the first to report the news at 11:32 a.m. with Connie Colla and Dan Spindle anchoring. “This is one of those cases where we’ve been waiting, monitoring Twitter, we’ve got reporters and crews that have been down there staking out their spot at the courthouse,” Spindle said. “And we do know right now they announced and went through this chain of events to let everybody know.”

Fox O&O KSAZ was next at 11:34 a.m. with Ron Hoon and Rick D’Amico at the anchor desk. CBS affiliate KPHO and independent station KTVK both reported the news at 11:36 a.m. Nicole Crites and Pat McReynolds anchored on KPHO and Kaley O’Kelly and Javier Soto anchored on KTVK.

NBC affiliate KPNX reported the news at 11:38 a.m. with Scott Light and Tram Mai anchoring.

The verdict will be read at 4:30pmET/1:30pmMT.

>Update: The jury has found Arias guilty of first-degree murder.

Cleveland Stations Report on Rescue of Missing Ohio Women

Three Ohio women who went missing between 2000 and 2004 were found at a house in Cleveland Monday evening, prompting local stations to devote primetime programming to the breaking news.

WOIO‘s Ed Gallek was the first to report the news during the 6 p.m. newscast, at 6:23 p.m. Ramona Robinson and Denise Dufala anchored coverage for the CBS affiliate, which partially preempted “Evening News with Scott Pelley” for local coverage. Tiffany Tucker reported from the scene for WOIO.

NBC affiliate WKYC and Fox affiliate WJW both reported the news during their respective 7 p.m. newscasts. Robin Swoboda and Jim Donovan anchored on WKYC, which was first at 7 p.m. sharp, and Bill Martin anchored for WJW, which was next at 7:07 p.m.

ABC affiliate WEWS broke into “Let’s Ask America” with the news at 7:18 p.m. Chris Flanagan anchored, with Stephanie Ramirez and John Kosich, who nabbed one of the notable interviews of the night, reporting from the scene.

68% of Boston Households Watch Local Coverage of Bombing Suspect’s Capture

Ratings for Boston stations were through the roof Friday night as all stations had wall-to-wall coverage of the manhunt for Boston marathon bombing suspect in Watertown. During the 8pm hour, when Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was taken into custody, 68% of Boston households were watching the four local network affiliates as well as local cable outlet NECN. Hearst-owned WCVB drew the most viewership.

From 7-9p.m., the Boston stations drew a combined 1.764 million viewers in a city that has 2.36 million TV households.

An additional 11% of Boston households were tuned in to coverage on CNN, Fox News and MSNBC from 7-9pm. TVNewser has the breakdown of the cable news ratings in Boston by network.

Here’s the ratings breakdown by station:

7:00-9:00 pm:

  • WCVB (ABC): 10.4 rating / 23 share with 609,000 total viewers (10.5 / 22 with 259,000 A25-54)
  • WBZ (CBS): 7.3 / 16 with 427,000 total viewers (7.1 / 15 with 175,000 A25-54)
  • WHDH (NBC): 6.7 / 15 with 392,000 total viewers (9.1 / 19 with 226,000 A25-54)
  • WFXT (Fox): 5.0 / 11 with 292,000 total viewers (6.9 / 15 with 171,000 A25-54)
  • NECN: 0.8 / 2 with 44,000 total viewers (0.7 / 2 with 18,000 A25-54)

8:00-9:00 pm:

  • WCVB: 11.0 / 23 with 645,000 total viewers (11.7 / 23 with 289,000 A25-54)
  • WBZ: 7.6 / 16 with 447,000 total viewers (7.6 / 15 with 187,000 A25-54)
  • WHDH: 7.1 / 15 with 417,000 total viewers (9.8 / 19 with 243,000 A25-54)
  • WFXT: 5.9 / 12 with 345,000 total viewers (8.4 / 16 with 207,00o A25-54)
  • NECN: 0.8 / 2 with 46,000 total viewers (0.7 / 1 with 17,000 A25-54)

 >More: For reference, an alert TVSpy commenter points out that 2012 Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and the New York Giants was watched by 56.7% of Boston households.

Boston Reporter Trapped in Gunfight: ‘I’ve Never in my Life Been in a Situation Like This’

WHDH reporter Adam Williams provided a dramatic firsthand account of the gunfight between Boston police and the marathon bombing suspects from Watertown last night.

Williams was trapped behind the police barricade during the gunfight, saying he was “so close he could smell the gunpowder.”

“I’m just staying down using the car as shelter,” Williams said. I’ve never in my life been in a situation like this … clearly we’re not in a situation where police would want us, but we can’t get out right now.” Watch:

WHDH-TV 7News Boston

Boston Stations Live Overnight as Police Search For Marathon Blast Suspect

It was a night of fast-moving developments in Boston, where stations were live overnight with coverage of the manhunt for the second suspect in the marathon bombings.

Some notes from the coverage: WCVB‘s special report, anchored by Heather Unruh and Ed Harding, was simulcast on CNN before Jake Tapper took over the network’s coverage around 1:30amET. WFXT‘s coverage, anchored by Mark Ockerbloom had several reporters spread throughout the city, including Mike Beaudet and Erica Richie. And WBZ got the first interview with the uncle of the suspects, who told the CBS O&O that they “do not deserve to live on this earth.” Watch it here.

Poynter’s Al Tompkins says the overnight coverage is an important reminder of “valuable it is to have experienced journalists on the air who know the city like the backs of their hands”:

I watched a WBZ anchor David Wade, for example, describe street-by-street where police were heading. Say what you want about TV anchors, but here is a guy with years on the street as a reporter and a Massachusetts native.

Boston media are like that. Days like this remind us of why we need journalists who have lived in the market they work in for a long time and who know how to report a story that doesn’t rest.

Dallas Stations Live Overnight With Coverage of Fertilizer Plant Explosion

More than 100 people were injured during an explosion at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas Wednesday night.

ABC affiliate WFAA was the first of the Dallas stations to report the news at 8:47 p.m. The station began continuing coverage at 9:35 p.m. that lasted throughout the night. John McCaa anchored the first several hours, with Ron Corning taking over at 2 a.m. Todd Unger reported from West.

Fox O&O KDFW reported the news at the top of the 9 p.m. hour. Heather Hays and Steve Eagar anchored five and a half hours of wall-to-wall coverage, signing off at 2:30 a.m. Brandon Todd reported from West for KDFW.

KTVT was next at 9:46 p.m. with Karen Borta anchoring. The CBS O&O had continuing coverage from 9:55 p.m. to 2 a.m. with Borta and Jason Allen reporting from West.

NBC O&O KXAS reported the news at 9:48 p.m. Amanda Guerra and Brian Curtis anchored until 12:30 a.m., with Scott Gordon reporting from West.

WCVB Reports ‘Imminent’ Arrest of Boston Bombing Suspect

Boston ABC affiliate WCVB was the first to report an “imminent” arrest in the Boston bombings case Tuesday afternoon.

WCVB investigative reporter Janet Wu reported the break in the case at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday afternoon. WCVB’s tweet beat the Associated Press, which was the next source to report an imminent arrest, by 12 minutes.

After the initial reports of an imminent arrest, there were some quick reports — including on CNN and Fox News — that a suspect had been arrested and was being transported to the federal courthouse in downtown Boston. According to the Boston Police, an arrest has not yet been made.

WCVB had been sourcing CNN to report the arrest had been made. Once CNN walked back their reporting, WCVB clarified on the air that there were conflicting accounts of the case’s progress. The station maintains an arrest is imminent.

Houston Stations Cover Lone Star Stabbing

Houston stations have been in wall-to-wall coverage of a stabbing at Lone Star College that happened this morning around 11:20amCT. At least 15 people were injured in the incident.

KPRC‘s Andy Cerota first reported the news at 11:38 a.m. KTRK‘s Melanie Lawson was next at 11:45 a.m. KRIV and KHOU both reported the news at the top of their respective noon newscasts, with Melissa Wilson anchoring on KRIV and Ron Trevino and Katherine Whaley anchoring on KHOU.

The stations dispatched reporters to the Cypress-based college campus as coverage continued. Phil Archer and Phillip Mena reported from the scene for NBC affiliate KPRC, with Joel Eisenbaum reporting from Houston’s Memorial Hermann Hospital. Miya Shay and Kevin Quinn reported from Lone Star College for ABC O&O KTRK. Isiah Carey reported from the scene for Fox O&O KRIV, and Malani Basu and Jeremy Desel covered the incident for CBS affiliate KHOU.

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