Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Comments on The Weather Channel remotes from Pensacola Beach 6-5-05

Pensacola Beach Tower
Click for a larger picture on

Saturday June 5th, 2005 the Weather Channel presented live remote reports from Pensacola Beach featuring Meteorologist Jim Cantore, to kick off hurricane season awareness. Jim did multiple reports from the beachfront at Pensacola Beach (PB), each time trying to give viewers a different view of the destruction that took place there when Hurricane Ivan came through September 16, 2004.

These remotes showed (mostly) private residential structures that were destroyed by Hurricane Ivan as Jim told viewers of the steps being taken to rebuild PB. While the remotes showed the devastation that was done to residential homes, I anticipated (and hoped) that some of these remotes would be from some of the area's many tourist areas used frequently when visiting PB. But this never happened. It has been hard for tourist to obtain information about the condition of some of their favorite places in and around PB. Not one single remote was from any areas that a visitor would probably go to while staying in PB. One such place is Casino Beach Boardwalk, the "main" beach that just about everyone visits while staying in PB. This area is by far the most populated beach in the immediate area, home of "The Dock". The Dock (a restaurant/bar) is a great place to get out of the mid-day sun while at Casino Beach Boardwalk. The Dock was destroyed by Hurricane Ivan and it has been hard to get any information as to if and when The Dock will be rebuilt.

I feel that The Weather Channel missed an opportunity to update it's viewers as to the condition of these areas that are important to tourist, which is the main source of revenue. This oversight is probably not the fault of Jim Cantore. Jim does an outstanding job as a Meteorologist, but I feel Jim's true strength is live remotes. I just find it hard to believe that The Weather Channel didn't have him do some remotes from areas mentioned above, or the Fort Pickens location which was overwashed by the sea surge during Hurricane Ivan. While awareness of the destruction to residential homes and condos is important, I feel that there should have been at least one remote from one of these popular areas. After all, a picture tells a thousand words. Other than the picture galleries from the local newspaper Pensacola News Journal, it is hard to find any info or pictures of what is left undamaged.

The Weather Channel usually keeps us informed, only not this time.