Dozens of business sectors have had a tough go In This Economy, and it appears that recessionomics has finally reached into that previously impenetrable world of useless local news station helicopters. Sadly, the Star‘s Aaron Barnhart is forced to report that Fox 4’s rotor-operated eye in the sky is no more — a victim, alas, of a) the economic maelstrom, and b) the totally pointless ownership of helicopters. Fox 4 GM Cheryl McDonald responds to Aaron’s queries, with typical PR flackishness and words that don’t really mean anything:
After careful consideration of the costs going forward and the ample technological developments that have become available in the process of news gathering and coverage, we have decided it more prudent not to renew our helicopter contract at this time and to utilize our financial resources elsewhere.
This decision does not signal in any way a reduced commitment to traffic and breaking news coverage for our viewers. In fact FOX 4 has the most advanced traffic system in the market, with more cameras, traffic sensors, e-mail and cell phone notifications, 3D renderings of every road and Highway, and the most precise drive time information available.
Wait, wait… 3D renderings of every road and “H”ighway? What are you, a wizard? And isn’t there a certain uselessness to all this? After all, you could summarize every piece of KC driving information and advice with the following: Avoid 35 and 70 during rush hour. There, we just saved you millions of dollars a year.
We’ve never quite seen the point of local news helicopters. They seem to possess limited inherent worth; how many times do we need to see an aerial shot of a post-chase police scene, or see a wall of clouds which may or may not form a tornado? We’re calling the retirement of SkyFox — loss of an awesome name aside — a pretty sound decision.