NY Broadcasters Test Mini-DTV Net


The FCC has given New York TV stations six months to test a digital TV system that would operate on three channels in the city and fill in DTV coverage gaps resulting from the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11.

The city and parts of New Jersey otherwise would not get full DTV coverage until the stations can relocate their facilities to the Freedom Tower, which is not expected to be completed until 2011.

WCBS-TV, WNBC-TV, WNYW-TV, WABC-TV, WWOR-TV, WPIX-TV, WNET-TV, WPXN-TV, WNJU-TV, and WXTV(TV), under the banner of the Metropolitan Television Authority, had asked for permission to test the service using vacant channels 12, 33 and 65.

The FCC's permission was granted subject to the condition that broadcasters must inform hospitals and nursing homes that they are testing the service and that it could have an affect on medical devices, and broadcasters are not allowed to begin testing until they can document that notification.