Water in its transmitter caused Channel 32 to shut down at about 6:20 last night, and what's more, the station's phone lines were out too, according to general manager Ed Jones ...

Programs scheduled for last night that will air tonight instead are "African-American Experience: Moms, Kids and Crack" at 9; a "live" followup to "Moms", taped last night, at 10; and at 11:30, the "Evening Exchange" interview with James Moran, candidate for D.C. delegate ...

"Stories From El Salvador" and "Contrary to Love: A Series on Addiction," originally set to air tonight, will be rescheduled ...

NBC News has signed Margaret Pelley as a correspondent ...

She has been an anchor and special assignment reporter at KCRA in Sacramento, Calif., the past eight years ...

The Texas Tech graduate began her TV career right there in Lubbock at KMAC in 1978 ...

NBC News, which in the past has toyed with reenactments that blur the difference between fact and fiction, skates close to the edge again Sunday, Nov. 11, when the News division airs a 10-minute special report on earthquakes anchored by Maria Shriver at 10:50 p.m., following the first part of the fictional NBC miniseries, "The Big One: The Great Los Angeles Earthquake" ...

Keenen Ivory Wayans, the creator and star of Fox's "In Living Color," will host ABC's presentation of the 18th annual "American Music Awards" on Jan. 28 ...

CBS News will have coverage of the 1990 congressional and gubernatorial races on Election Night starting at 9 ...

Anchor Dan Rather will be joined by correspondents Ed Bradley, Connie Chung, Charles Kuralt, Bruce Morton, Bob Schieffer, Lesley Stahl and Mike Wallace ...

A memorial service for William S. Paley, founder of CBS, will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Nov. 12, at Temple Emanu-El in Manhattan ...

In the fading moments of Congress earlier this week, both the House and Senate approved a bill granting a three-year antitrust immunity to the broadcasting industry -- networks, local stations, cable, producers and network affiliate organizations -- so it can develop voluntary guidelines on TV violence carried by non-news broadcast and cable programs ...

President Bush is expected to sign the legislation, which Sen. Paul Simon (D-Ill.) has been trying to get through Congress since 1985. It had previously passed the Senate three times and the House once ...

The Simon bill was sponsored in the House by Reps. Dan Glickman (D-Kan.) and Edward Feighan (D-Ohio) ...

"ABC World News Tonight With Peter Jennings" had no trouble winning the network news race last week, averaging a 10.3/21, compared with a 9.5/19 for "CBS Evening News With Dan Rather" and a 9.1/18 for "NBC Nightly News With Tom Brokaw" ...

TV RATINGZZZZ

Following are the top 20 network prime-time shows last week, ranked according to the percentage of the nation's 92.1 milllion TV households that watched, as measured by the A.C. Nielsen Co. A share represents the percentage of actual sets-in-use tuned to a particular program when it aired.

RATINGS........................SHARE...NETWORK

1 21.1 20 Minutes.......................34...CBS

2 20.4 Cheers ..........................32...NBC

3 20.1 Roseanne.........................31...ABC

4 19.9 Designing Women..................30...CBS

5 18.6 Murphy Brown.....................28...CBS

6 18.5 Murder, She Wrote................27...CBS

7 18.1 America's Funniest Home Videos...27...ABC

8 18.0 Empty Nest.......................33...NBC

..18.0 The Cosby Show...................29...NBC

10 17.9 A Different World...............29...NBC

11 17.2 Doogie Howser, M.D..............27...ABC

12 17.0 Who's the Boss?.................27...ABC

13 16.8 Matlock.........................26...NBC

14 16.7 Coach...........................26...ABC

15 16.5 Growing Pains...................26...ABC

...16.5 In the Heat of the Night........25...NBC

17 16.4 The Golden Girls ...............31...NBC

16.4 NFL Bengals-Browns.................29...ABC

19 16.2 The Wonder Years................27...ABC

20 16.1 America's Funniest People.......23...ABC

Only three-tenths of a ratings point (representing only about 280,000 TV homes around the country) separated winner NBC and third-place CBS last week in one of the tightest races ever ...

NBC averaged a 12.5 rating and a 21 share, compared with a 12.4/21 for ABC, a 12.2/21 for CBS and a 6.6/11 for Fox ...

NBC won Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday nights, while ABC took Monday and Friday and CBS won Sunday ...

After six weeks, NBC has a narrow lead with a 13.2/22 average, compared with a 13.1/22 for CBS, a 12.7/21 for ABC and a 6.2/10 for Fox ...

Fox's "The Simpsons," which kicked off its new season three weeks ago with an eighth-place finish, tied for 24th this past week ...

In other highlights and lowlights, only one new network series, ABC's "America's Funniest People," in 20th, was in the Top 30 last week although the premiere of NBC's "Law & Order" made 31st and ABC's "Married People" was 32nd ...

CBS's top-rated new series was "The Trials of Rosie O'Neill," tied for 40th. The premiere of its "Over My Dead Body" last Friday finished 43rd ...

NBC's "Fresh Prince of Bel Air" tied with the NBC movie "Extreme Close-Up" for 44th ...

The premiere of CBS's "WIOU" was 52nd ...

"Sunday Night With Larry King" on NBC tied for 86th among 94 programs ranked on the four networks last week. King's showing (a 5.6/8) at 8 that night helped CBS's "Murder, She Wrote" to its best rating and highest ranking so far and also enabled Angela Lansbury to beat ABC's "America's Funniest Home Videos" for the first time since Jan. 21 ...

Among the really endangered new series, on the bigger networks, ABC's "Cop Rock" was 77th, CBS's "The Hogan Family" (new to CBS, anyway) was 79th, CBS's "Family Man" and ABC's "China Beach" tied for 83rd and NBC's "Lifestories" was 90th ...

Top-rated moompitcher of the week: CBS's "The Secret Life of Archie's Wife," tied for 33rd. Worst-rated moompitcher of the week: CBS's "Only One Survived," which was 81st ...

The Final And Without A Shadow Of A Doubt Fatal Five last week included the aforementioned "Lifestories," followed, in order, by four Fox fixtures -- "Haywire," in 91st, "American Chronicles" and "DEA," tied for 92nd, and "Against the Law," paws up and bars down in 94th for the week ending Sunday ...

Now This On Thursday, Nov. 8, at 9, NBC will air the 200th episode of "Cheers" ...

Channel 20, undoubtedly as a public service, will air the very first episode of "Cheers" at 7:30 p.m. next Wednesday at 7:30 so we'll all have an idea of why the top-rated series in TV caught on ...

ABC won Monday night, averaging a 15.7/25 in primetime. The NFL game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and L.A. Rams averaged a 16.1/29 between 9 and 12:05 yesterday morning ...

NBC averaged a 13.9/23 from 8 to 11 in the national averages. A one-hour "Fresh Prince of Bel Air" did a 14.0/21, while the movie "A Killer Among Us" averaged a 13.9/23 ...

CBS, second for the night with a 15.5/25, had a nice surprise when a once-only appearance of "Evening Shade" in the 8 p.m. Monday slot averaged a 15.1/23, compared with the 10.6/20 it had averaged so far on Friday nights ...

"Designing Women" was the top performer for the network Monday with a 19.1/30. "The Trials of Rosie O'Neill" trialed (I mean, trailed) off to a 12.0/22 ...

Fox's movie, "A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon," averaged a 3.2/5 ...

By the way, Airwaves, are you planning to do more of your local ratingzzz for October this morning?

Just one item, chief ...

Well that's a relief. But be sure that the next time you write anything about a drop in the local audiences from a year ago you make it clear that you are dealing in total TV households, not total viewers. Which, unfortunately, you didn't do yesterday ...

Sorry about that, chief ...

This morning I just want to report that in the local public affairs weekend race last month, "The McLaughlin Group" on WRC averaged an 8.6/17 at 7:30 on Saturdays in October, compared with an 8.2/17 for WUSA's "Inside Washington" at 7 on Saturdays. WTTG's "Off the Record" averaged a 2.9/6 the first two Saturday nights at 6:30 and then a 2.0/8 when it moved to Sunday at 9 a.m. the last two weeks ...

Each local ratings point represents 17,491 TV households. Not viewers ...

Oh, go home, Airwaves! ...