KTVU-TV Gives Fake Names for Pilots who Died on ASIANA FLIGHT 214 CRASH (VIDEO)
KTVU-TV has dismissed at least three veteran producers over the on-air gaffe involving the fake names of those Asiana airline pilots that became an instant YouTube hit – and a major embarrassment to the station.
Station sources confirmed late Wednesday that investigative producer Roland De Wolk, special projects producer Cristina Gastelu and producer Brad Belstock were all sent packing following an in-house investigation into the July 12 broadcast of four fake names of the pilots involved in the Asiana Flight 214 crash at San Francisco International Airport on July 6.
A fourth – noon news producer Elvin Sledge – told colleagues he was leaving for health reasons.
News of the firings was first reported on Rich Lieberman’s 415 Media blog.
During its noon newscast on July 12, anchor Tori Campbell announced that “KTVU has just learned the names of the four pilots who were on board” the ill-fated plane – then proceeded to read from a teleprompter while the phony names were displayed on a graphic.
The names she gave were Capt. Sum Ting Wong, Wi Tu Lo, Ho Lee Fuk and Bang Ding Ow.
Only after the station returned from a break did Campbell – who had clearly been unaware of the mistake – read an on-air correction, telling viewers that the station had confirmed the names with the National Transportation Safety Board.
By day’s end, the NTSB issued its own apology for “inaccurate and offensive names that were mistakenly confirmed” to KTVU. Soon after, the NTSB announced that it had fired a summer intern over the incident.