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TCSAR Helps Keep Storm Information Flowing

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Sonora, CA — The Tuolumne County Search and Rescue Team lent a big helping hand this week when the storm system impacted Clarke Broadcasting’s communication tower in an isolated area outside of Columbia.

Clarke Broadcasting’s radio stations are set up to remain on the air during storm events and widespread power outages because of investments in backup generators and other emergency equipment. However, when the power went out at the tower site on Wednesday there was an unexpected failed battery issue on a generator that took down all three stations. While this would have typically been a much easier fix, the recent heavy snow and downed trees made the roads impassable up to the isolated site. You could call it a “perfect storm” type series of events.

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office SAR team, being community partners and knowing the importance of getting out local information, fired up off-road equipment and helped Clarke Broadcasting’s head engineer travel up the two-mile road to swap out the generator battery. Those helping were Veteran SAR member Mark Banks and SAR Liasion and Patrol Deputy Jeremy Green.

After being down for a few hours, the battery issue was fixed, and the equipment was tested, so that all three stations could go back live on the air.