Social media has been flooded with video of a West Virginia reporter “Tori Yorgey” who was hit by a car on live television. There have been concerns raised about the safety of television crews.
At the NBC-affiliated TV station in Huntington, West Virginia, reporter Tori Yorgey was hit from behind by a vehicle. She was covering a water main break.
Some journalists, however, are highlighting the clip as an example of the unsafe situation that they face on the job.
Who is Tori Yorgey?
WSAZ-TV reporter Tori Yorgey was reporting from the scene of inclement weather in Dunbar, W.Va, on Wednesday when she was struck by a car, knocking her out of sight. Immediately following the incident, she assured the anchor that everything was fine, sounding shaken but continuing with journalism.
Yorgey was born and raised outside of Philadelphia and graduated from Pennsylvania State University, according to a profile in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Yorgey graduated from Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School in Plymouth Meeting in 2014, according to More Than the Curve.
She can be heard saying, “I just got hit by a car, but I’m fine.” “I’m OK.”
After she finishes her report, she informs viewers that she was struck by an automobile while in college.
“I am so glad I’m OK!” she said.
What happened after that?
The website of WSAZ-TV indicates that Yorgey joined the station in December 2018. In an interview this week she revealed that this was her final week at WSAZ.
Elizabeth Hernandez of the Denver Post said the video was proof the industry needed to be redesigned to protect journalists from dangerous situations like Yorgey’s.
Wow, this reporter gets hit by a car, and rebounds to finish the live shot! 😂 pic.twitter.com/dbwKt5N1xc
— Lee K. Howard (@HowardWKYT) January 20, 2022
Hernandez wrote on Twitter that a live hit-and-run death of a journalist who’s still doing her job is not a story of resilience. It is a story of a sick industry and works culture that requires people to put their health and safety before their jobs.
Suzie Hunter, a former television reporter for WTNH in New Haven, Conn., found the clip alarming. She pointed out that it illustrates how reporters can find themselves in dangerous situations in the industry. It places a high value on deadlines and self-sufficiency.
Hunter said that it was good to see Yorgey continuing the broadcast, as it seemed as if she were alright. But her bosses should not have let her continue until they were sure she was safe.
Ankita Khanrah is a second-year student of the Master of Communication and Journalism (Integrated) programme at the School of Mass Communication, KIIT Deemed University, Bhubaneswar.