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Seattle Mazda drivers can't change the radio dial. It's stuck on KUOW

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

We know folks in Seattle love public radio, but this might be a little much. Turns out, the radios in some 2016 Mazdas are stuck on 94.9.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PAIGE BROWNING, BYLINE: This is KUOW News. I'm Paige Browning in Seattle.

LEILA FADEL, HOST:

That just happens to be the frequency of NPR member station KUOW. It's now the only station that Mazda owner Scott Smith (ph) gets.

SCOTT SMITH: And when I tell people about it, they're like, oh, my God. That's the weirdest thing I've ever heard.

FADEL: Smith got into his car after shopping recently and discovered the infotainment system had frozen.

SMITH: You can adjust the volume. You can't change the station. Luckily, I am an NPR listener, and that's fine. So (laughter) I have NPR.

CASEY MARTIN, BYLINE: Mazda has not said anything about it. It's kind of a sore subject because they have a lot of people calling in.

R MARTIN: That's KUOW reporter Casey Martin. He's been trying to get to the bottom of this. He says the problem started about three weeks ago.

C MARTIN: You know, Mazda doesn't quite really know what's going on right now. There was one idea that it may have been the switch over from 3G to 5G that all cellphone companies did a couple of weeks ago, but now they're pretty sure that it has something to do with KUOW's HD radio signal.

R MARTIN: Mazda says it might have a part that'll fix the problem, but...

C MARTIN: There is a supply chain issue, and so they don't even know when they could do that. Other people told me that they were put on a waiting list and there was no time frame of when they might get that replacement part.

FADEL: KUOW says it's cooperating with the investigation. No word yet on how this might affect demand for NPR tote bags.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "DRIVE MY CAR")

THE BEATLES: (Singing) Baby, you can drive my car. Yes, I'm gonna be a star. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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