FPU works to remedy its Ch. 5 reception

Since the digital TV conversion began earlier this year, Fayetteville Public Utilities and its cable customers have experienced technical problems with the reception of Nashville's Channel 5.

"We have experienced occasions when Channel 5 programming, delivered by our cable system, freezes, blocks or tiles," says Fayetteville Public Utilities' Britt Dye, CEO and General Manager. "Since the digital conversion, these problems seem to have magnified. For weeks, our cable technicians have studied the problem and have tried several avenues to correct the reception quality for our cable subscribers."

According to Dye, some of the problems are occurring at the Icy Bank radio tower where not only cable antennas are installed, but also radio transmitters and antennas owned by Fayetteville Public Utilities and several other local entities. The radio frequencies cause interference when two radios area keyed simultaneously. Over time, Fayetteville Public Utilities' technicians have installed new cable antennas, added frequency filters and also have moved the antennas to improve the reception of the cable signal.

Although the situation with Channel 5 has improved, it has not been completely corrected.

"We regret the problems our customers have experienced with Channel 5," says Dye. "Please know that we are taking every necessary step to remedy the problem. In fact, we plan to move the Channel 5 antenna to our Park City electric substation to hopefully improve the reception our customers receive."

"We have recently begun the paperwork process of applying for an optical fiber transport tie to Nashville that will carry not only Channel 5, but also Channels 2, 4 and 8 from Nashville."

"We've been working on a solution for the Channel 5 problem for weeks," he adds. "Rest assured that no customer's call has gone ignored by our Telecom Department. We ask that you continue your patience as we work to improve the quality of your cable reception."