Popular Minnesota TV Station Made Huge On-Air Mistake About Death
A big mistake happened on-air during a live broadcast with a popular TV station in Minnesota. Instead of saying that a student was injured, a reporter stated that a student died.
If you missed the news story, ABC 6 News reported on a story about some concerns at an intersection near Century High School. The story started with Robin Wolfram stating the following,
"...It was just a few years ago when a Century High School student was crossing the street near the school when he was hit by a car and died. That prompted change. There is a new roundabout in that place now but there are still issues at another intersection nearby."
Superintendent Dr. Pekel shared that newscast on X, formerly known as Twitter, with the following comment,
"Despite what you will see in this report, no student was killed walking across the street from Century High School and we are working on ways to strengthen student and driver safety. Does anybody check their facts anymore? Rochester MN should be a place where facts still matter."
Since that post, the story has been updated by ABC 6 News and the initial statement made in the story by Robin Wolfram is not included.
In the comments, a follow-up conversation has taken place that indicated the story was written by a new reporter.
I understand what this industry is like. It is fast-paced, competitive, and challenging, and as Brianna Cook mentioned in her X comment, we are humans and we make mistakes. I've made my fair share and people love to call me out about it on social media. I'm sure that the new reporter who wrote the story will never forget this and fact-checking will be top of mind all of the time. My guess is that they have already learned from this. Hopefully, they won't leave the industry because of it.
Providing facts, fixing the story, apologies, and retractions are important. Hopefully, all of that is being done to the satisfaction of Rochester Public Schools and also to the family and student that was mentioned at the start of the initial story.
Do You Think That the Intersection Near Century High School and the New McDonald's Is Dangerous?
I have driven to Century High School in Rochester, Minnesota at various times every single day this school year for my kid. I had concerns that the new Caribou Coffee, Kwik Trip, and McDonald's would be extremely busy spots due to students. But are students 100% to blame?
First, I know there is a pedestrian bridge from the Century High School area to the old Kwik Trip location. But the Kwik Trip moved. Using that bridge isn't as convenient to get to those new businesses and is going to possibly take students more time, especially if they have to re-enter Century through the front door. I wouldn't use it either.
As far as the students being the reason it is not as safe is not 100% accurate. I have seen witnessed adults not cross correctly as well. I've also watched both demographics cross perfectly fine. Now, if you see my kid crossing the road in an unsafe way, please text me ASAP and I'll deal with him.
I do think that some improvements could be made to that intersection to make it safer for all. I'm not an engineer so I have no idea what would be feasible with what currently exists or if plans are in the works already but let's not blame the students entirely for this issue. The businesses are geniuses for building in this location. A study doesn't need to be done to know that high school students love coffee, McDonald's, and Kwik Trip.
Changes just happened near the fire station which is helping traffic flow so maybe something can be done to improve the safety of all pedestrians crossing in this area. Sounds like the Superintendent is aware of the issue and they are working on this. Change takes time though, as we know from the roundabout that was just put in.
Be patient. Be safe. And remember, someone painted those crosswalks for a reason...make sure you use them!
Top 5 Most Dangerous Roads in the State of Minnesota
Gallery Credit: Jessica On The Radio