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WAGM hopes to have over-the-air signal fixed by end of week

MARS HILL, Maine — Due to ice accumulation on the Mars Hill Mountain signal towers, WAGM viewers who use an antenna have had trouble watching the channel on television since Sunday. 

WAGM general manager Kelly Landeen said that ice buildup on the station’s towers on Mars Hill Mountain has disrupted transmitter over-the-air signals.

“The transmitter signal can not break through the ice and is reflected back down into the transmitter,” Landeen said in a press release. “As a safety precaution, the transmitter is programmed to shut down to avoid any further damage.”

The issue affects those viewers who use an antenna to pick up the WAGM station’s over-the-air signal, but not those who have cable or satellite dishes.

Landeen said Tuesday that the issue is affecting about 12 percent of the station’s market, comprising more than 3,000 households who rely on the over-the-air connection.

Landeen said the station is expecting the issue to be resolved by the end of the week, as another thaw reaches Aroostook County with temperatures expected in the mid-to-upper 30s.

Landeen said the station has contacted the antenna’s manufacturer, which recommended replacing it, something that couldn’t be done until spring.

“We are going to be looking at putting up a new antenna this spring with de-icers on it so it won’t happen again,” Landeen said.

“We are working to get the signal back on air as soon as possible,” Landeen said, adding that WAGM content can be viewed online or through a free ROKU channel. CBS content can be accessed through CBS All Access, Landeen added.

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