SAG-AFTRA: TV Journalist’s Close Call With Car Shows Job Becoming ‘Increasingly Perilous’

(Image credit: WSAZ)

LOS ANGELES— Film and TV industry union SAG-AFTRA said last week’s incident in West Virginia in which a TV journalist was nearly sideswiped by a car while on-air is just the latest example of how dangerous broadcast journalism has become in recent years. 

In the widely reported incident, Tori Yorgey, a reporter for WSAZ in Huntington, WV, was reporting live on air from Dubar, WV when she was almost hit by a car. Fortunately she was uninjured; however, that did not lessen the impact the incident had on viewers (who lit up Twitter with statements of support) and station colleagues. 

“That’s live TV for you, it’s all good. I actually got hit by a car in college too just like that,” she told station anchor Tim Irr who responded, “I am so glad I’m OK, you’re OK, you’re OK, we’re all good.” 

SAG-AFTRA said it was “thankful” Yorgey was not injured, but said it illustrated the perils of the job.

"This incident highlights the dangers faced when employers ask journalists to perform live shots in the field by themselves," the union said. "In the last few years, live reporting has become increasingly perilous and journalists have faced harassment and other dangers when reporting alone. We consider this to be a fundamental safety concern and urge all employers to end the practice of assigning solo live shots."

Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (, the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.