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Friday, May 21, 2010

CSW Commentary: Minor Sedalia Tornado Brings Major TV News Hype in Kansas City

he storm itself was very small- existing weather conditions were adequate for only small- weak and brief tornadoes at the very worst.

At 6:46 p.m. Wednesday evening- such a tornado touched down on the south side of Sedalia MO- causing minor damage to about a dozen homes- but inflicting no injuries according to the SEDALIA DEMOCRAT newspaper on-line.

If you watched the 10 p.m. news on KMBC Channel 9- you'd have thought that Sedalia had been devastated.
A weather radar view of the storm producing a small- weak tornado in south Sedalia.

For a FULL 5 minutes leading their newscast- Channel 9 hyped that small- minor twister into what they saw as a major story.

I'm a weather freak- but after 2-1/2 minutes of their coverage with helicopter shots of the funnel- I went surfing for REAL news on the other channels (checking back to 9 a few times)- and those channels (4 and 41 anyway) were running other stories- saving the Sedalia minor tornado story for their weather segments.

Newscasts in this town USED to get 20 to 30-shares of viewers- anymore it's reason for a station to celebrate any double-digit share of viewers.

After watching Channel 9's coverage of an otherwise minor event from a city 50 miles away- it's not hard at all to understand why that is.

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