There is a lot of breaking news regarding Hurricane Dorian’s impact on Ocracoke. Check out the home page for updates.
By Peter Vankevich
WOVV, “Ocracoke’s Village Voice” and community radio station, is temporarily off air due to damage to its electric system.
Electric power for the island was lost early Friday morning (Sept. 6) when Hurricane Dorian battered the island with gusts above 100 mph.
Although power was restored on Monday morning, many homes and businesses are still without power due to damage to their power lines or electric box. Tideland electricians have examined every electric box and have removed meters when they deemed conditions are unsafe, and the station’s was one of them.
The radio studio, located on the second floor of the old OVFD firehouse on Back Road, has a backup generator to stay on the air when power goes down and it, for the most part, worked until the decision was made to cut it off for safety reasons.
The station, which broadcasts at 90.1 FM, has had its bouts with major storms. At 5:20 a.m. on Oct. 9, 2016, Hurricane Matthew was at its peak winds of more than 80 mph on the island, which toppled the broadcasting tower, quashing capability to broadcast terrestrially for several weeks. Online streaming at www.wovv.rocks continued during that time.
A temporary antenna was set up to resume broadcasting at 650 watts and in November 2017, a new 70-foot tower and antenna was installed. The FCC-licensed signal now reaches all the way to the Hatteras Inlet. The new tower survived Dorian but the storm brought other problems.
The nonprofit radio station provides music, local news and weather as well as broadcasting Ocracoke School’s basketball games. Original music programs are in the evenings, weekends and Thursday mornings.
A popular innovative program, called Songs to Share or Breaking into the Jukebox, gives folks a chance to get on the air with a playlist of 10 of their favorite songs.
Those wishing to follow WOVV can join its Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/WOVVFM/
Point of disclosure: Peter Vankevich hosts Friday morning’s What’s Happening on Ocracoke other shows on WOVV.