When It Rains It Pours Ratings, Weather Channel Gains Momentum With Katrina

Hurricane Katrina packed winds of over 150 miles per hour--and also blew wind into The Weather Channel's viewership. The storm, especially in Southern states, helped the cable network's ratings soar almost fivefold--some 470 percent to a total day Nielsen Media Research 1.71 rating on August 28, when the storm blew into New Orleans and the rest of Louisiana.

The Weather Channel claimed this rise was significantly higher than other cable news networks covering the event. It pointed out that Fox News earned a 0.92 rating; CNN, a 0.55 rating; and MSNBC, a 0.22 rating. The Weather Channel also credits its constant alerts for evacuation warnings and shelter advisories. And the storm also pushed viewers to its weather.com Web site, which witnessed a 350 percent increase in traffic versus that of a typical Sunday.

The Weather Channel's rating record was last year on September 13, during Hurricane Ivan. It earned a total day 1.9 rating on households, representing 1.6 million homes.



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