Weatherman who defied ‘Code Red’ alerts is out of a job
One week ago Joe Crain, the morning meteorologist at WICS in Springfield, Illinois, called out station management for mandating over-the-top “Code Red” weather alerts.
Now Crain is officially out of a job.
A spokesman for the station’s parent, Sinclair Broadcast Group, confirmed Wednesday night that “Joe was let go.”
The company declined to comment further to CNN Business.
But Crain’s exit caps a week of controversy for the station and its parent company, which has repeatedly come under scrutiny for its editorial choices.
Crain’s June 5 commentary about the station’s “Code Red” warnings went viral — much to the dismay of Sinclair executives.
“We want you to know it’s not us,” Crain told viewers, blaming “corporate” for the frightening alerts.
Crain was noticeably absent from the station’s airwaves after his monologue. Viewers and advertisers supported him en masse, with many expressing concern that he might lose his job. One week later, “people are still livid” in the community, a Sinclair source said on Wednesday.
WICS tried to assuage the concerns by dropping the “Code Red” branding and replacing it with “Weather Warn,” the same jargon that other Sinclair stations use. The change was announced on Monday.
Crain has declined to comment on his status, and he did not respond to a request for comment after Sinclair confirmed his departure on Wednesday evening.
But the writing was on the proverbial wall when Sinclair posted a job listing for a WICS morning meteorologist on Tuesday.