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OPT is currently operating at medium power from KY3’s tower site in Fordland, MO.  At present, we are serving approximately 85% of our coverage area.  It is our highest priority to restore coverage to all OPT viewers, and we are working tirelessly toward that goal. 

Restoration will continue to occur in stages, as we work to establish a permanent broadcast facility, and simultaneously seek opportunities to improve coverage at our interim site.  We anticipate the next significant gain in coverage to occur in spring 2019 when we will be able to implement a power increase at our current location. 

Background

KOZK’s broadcast tower collapsed while work was being performed in order to achieve an FCC-mandated channel reassignment.  KOZK was one of nearly 1,000 stations nationwide that were required to change frequencies as part of a broader effort to clear spectrum for wireless services.  The collapse of the tower caused a massive interruption in Springfield-area service.

We are working to establish a permanent broadcast facility.  This is an enormous undertaking that involves countless technical, logistical, financial, and regulatory hurdles.  Current industry conditions present additional challenges as vendors, contractors, consultants, and regulators remain fully engaged in executing the mandatory channel reassignments of hundreds stations across the country.  Those reassignment projects are ongoing and scheduled to occur in ten back-to-back phases, ending in July 2020. 

We appreciate your continued patience as we work toward full restoration.  Please know that we are doing all we can to move the process forward as quickly as possible, and will continue to share updates as they are available.  

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q.  What happened to OPT’s signal?

A.   In April 2018, the broadcast tower that delivers OPT’s signal to the Springfield area collapsed while work was being performed at the site.  

 

Q.  Did all OPT viewers lose signal?

A.   Most Springfield area viewers were initially impacted by service outages.  Joplin viewers were unaffected.

 

Q.  How many people are still without service?

A.   Approximately 85% of OPT’s pre-collapse viewing audience is currently receiving service.  However, results for individual viewers will vary significantly based on location, terrain, and antenna. 

 

Q.  When will coverage be restored for those OPT viewers who remain without service?

A.   We do not yet have a reliable timeline for full restoration of coverage.  Restoration will continue to occur in stages, as we work to establish a permanent broadcast facility, and simultaneously seek opportunities to improve coverage at our interim site.  We anticipate the next significant gain in coverage to occur in spring 2019 when we will be able to implement a power increase at our current location. 

 

Q.  Why did OPT service returned more quickly for cable and satellite viewers? 

A.   Technology enables cable and satellite providers to receive OPT through alternative methods, making the broadcast tower a less critical component in the delivery chain.  We were able to work with cable and satellite providers to identify and implement these alternative delivery methods.

 

Q.  What has OPT done to restore service?  

A.   In the days following the collapse, OPT setup a low-power operation from the Missouri State University campus.  This allowed us to restore service to satellite viewers, most cable viewers, and some over-the-air viewers inside Springfield.

In July 2018, we commenced operation from KY3’s tower site in Fordland, MO.  This allowed us to provide a more reliable signal, and increase our over-the-air coverage.   

In September 2018, we commenced operation on our new frequency and simultaneously implemented a power increase that provided another significant improvement in our over-the-air coverage.
 

Q. I still haven’t rescanned my TV.  Is it too late?  How do I do that?   

 A.  No, it is not too late.  You can rescan your TV (or converter box) by completing the following steps:

  • Select the MENU button on remote control to your TV or converter box.
  • Select SETUP on the menu listing.
  • Select ANTENNA.
  • Select CHANNELSCAN or AUTOTUNE.

 

More information about the rescan is available here

 

Q.  Is there any way for me to watch my favorite shows while I wait for service to be restored? 

A.   Many OPT and PBS programs are available online using your computer, or through the PBS app or PBS Kids app on your tablet, smartphone or streaming device.

 

Q.  I have missed some of my favorite shows.  Are you going to rebroadcast them? 

A.   We have heard from many folks requesting repeats of particular shows.  Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to repeat everything that has been requested.  Many of these programs are, however, available online.

 

Q.  How can I stay informed?

A.  We will continue to provide updates at www.optv.org as new information becomes available.

 

Q.  What can I do to help?

A.  We appreciate the many people who have reached out with offers of support—and are especially grateful to everyone who supports public television with financial contributions.  Now more than ever we appreciate that support.  Because of you, we are confident we will be able to work through this challenge and fully restore OPT/PBS service to all of the communities we serve.