ABC set to lose role as sole bushfire broadcaster

 ABC set to lose role as sole bushfire broadcaster

2 July 2009

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Australia — The ABC is set to lose its role as sole bushfire broadcaster under moves to improve the information flow on extreme weather days.

The State Government has revealed it will review the existing arrangements with the national broadcaster amid concern more information could be aired under a new system.

The ABC will still be able to remain an emergency broadcaster but also will be subject to new protocols regarding the acknowledgment and receipt of warnings and the frequency of the warnings.

It comes amid criticism that the existing arrangement locked out commercial radio stations who could reach tens or even hundreds of thousands of extra people.

Under the new plan, detailed in a Government submission to the Royal Commission, private sector stations will also be able to become emergency broadcasters.

There were complaints in fire communities that on Black Saturday reports by the ABC were at times slow and sometimes inaccurate.

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