1010 AM WINS may not have to miss them for long. He's reportedly going to resurface as a significant player on the new 101.9 FM, whatever it will be called and whatever format it will adopt.
According to a story by David Hinckley at nydailynews.com, McKay left Metro Networks last Thursday, giving his last WINS reports just a week before he would have marked 20 years at Metro.
Since traffic reports are one of the most popular and critical elements on radio, McKay and other traffic reporters - like Tom Kaminski on 880 AM WCBS and others too numerous to mention - often develop their own followings.
In McKay's case, he has become known for offering alternative routes ("The McKay Way") and for suggesting many times that traffic jams are partly caused by a shortage of open booths on toll roads.
His hiring by Merlin Media, which is buying the current 101.9 FM WRXP from Emmis, hasn't officially been announced. It was confirmed by persons close to the deal.
McKay is also known for his traffic reports and banter on 101.5 FM WKXW. Walter Sabo, who created the "New Jersey 101.5" format, was recently hired to run Merlin.
In any case, the move adds weight to reports that Merlin plans a nonmusic format for the station - perhaps news, possibly with a talk component.