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New Hurricane Irma Media Usage Study Confirms Local Television is the Leading Source of News Coverage for Americans in States of Emergency
[September 13, 2017]

New Hurricane Irma Media Usage Study Confirms Local Television is the Leading Source of News Coverage for Americans in States of Emergency

TVB (, the trade association of America's local broadcast television industry, today issued the following statement from Steve Lanzano, TVB President and CEO on the release of "Hurricane Irma Media Usage" survey results. The proprietary survey conducted by Research Now, a global expert in online market research, is an extension of the "Hurricane Harvey Media Usage" study released on August 30, 2017.

"Live, local broadcast television news connects viewers to their communities and serves as the leading and most reliable source for real-time reporting and lifesaving information in emergencies. As Hurricane Irma approached Florida markets, residents overwhelmingly chose their local broadcast TV stations over all other media for storm coverage, with 85% of survey respondents using local TV news for critical information. On a daily average, Floridians spent the most time with local TV news during the weather emergency, with over five hours of viewing, while Hispanic viewers spent nearly six hours.

Hadassa Gerber, TVB Chief Research Officer added, "In a state always on alert during hurricane season, 31% of respondents reported that they downloaded their local TV station's mobile app specifically for situations like Irma. Hurricane Irma Media Usage survey results once again confirm the important role broadcasters' television and digital platforms serve in keeping local communities safe and informed."

Research Now surveyed 1,193 respondents about their media consumption habits related to Hurricane Irma. Interviews began midday Friday, September 8th in Miami, Ft. Myers and West Palm and midday Saturday, September 9th in Tampa Bay, Orlando and Jacksonville. Key insights from the study include:

  • 85% of respondents used local broadcast TV news as their source for information
  • At 5 hours and 9 minutes, respondents spent more time on local television for Hurricane Irma coverage than any other news source on average per day
  • On average, Hispanic respondents spent 5 hours and 54 minutes with local television per day, almost an additional hour
  • Respondents' top reason for using local TV websites/apps during storms was "the constant updates and latest information"

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