Minneapolis TV rises to the call

Local television stations in the nation’s fifteenth largest market sprung into action shortly after a bridge collapse at Interstate 35W over the Mississippi river, the main link between the eastern downtown portion of Minneapolis to the University/Northeast sections of the city.

According to Broadcasting & Cable, ABC affiliate KSTP was first on the scene just minutes after the bridge collapse, which occurred at 6:05 p.m. yesterday, with aerial views. Other stations joined in quickly, including CBS-owned WCCO, which is trying to pull staffers back from vacation and pulling together sources quickly.

The market’s four news stations pre-empted network prime-time last night for continuing coverage of the disaster, which so far has claimed four lives.

Fox’s KMSP, for one, went on the air at 6:15 and continued until midnight, picking up coverage again at 5 a.m. this morning.

Traffic on the four stations’ websites soared last night, but the sites were still easily accessible, and the streaming video worked for the most part (KSTP’s feed though, continued to drop and come back.)

(Information on link of bridge corrected on 2007-08-04 at 10:45. We apologize for the error.)