Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Late Breaking FIRE!

I'm still getting used to the new camera. I imagine it's like riding a horse and the horse is rolling its' eyes, because the horse knows the difference between someone who knows what they're doing. Ne-heh-heh-heh-heh.

Fire in Anahiem hills and the whole story about how I got to that point could be a few posts in itself. I made it almost to the scene in record time just before the 11:00pm newscast.

The clock was ticking. I was by myself and the station wanted to get a ground level camera shot to back up the chopper.

You can't see him in the underexposed shot above (sorry), but there's a CHP officer laying out flares to block the South bound entrance to the 241 Toll Road.

I sat there for five minutes while he got the okay to let me through and tick-tock the clock was ticking.

I'll be honest, I didn't think I'd make it in time and once I got to the scene, I didn't think I'd be able to establish a signal with the hills surrounding me.


I passed two other stations set up along the road and drove right up close to where the fire fighters were working to get this fire quickly under control.

It just seemed like they meant business and hot spots were getting shut down quickly with surgical precision.

Of course, that meant my prime location became just a slight bit lame after about ten minutes.

The wind was blowing and I made the mistake of connecting my camera and letting the station see my picture while I was still setting up the rest of the gear.

I learned that my camera was "hot" (live on the air) almost as soon as I had plugged in the video cable.

The wind was whipping right around the truck and would have blown over the camera if I hadn't been standing right next to it.

That made setting up the audio and IFB lines a little tricky. I'm just lucky the road had been shut down. It's even more difficult to set up when cars and trucks are zipping past.

If you watched the newscast at 11:00pm, then you know Glen Walker made it to my my position. Photographer Mark Dunn and he were on another story and had gotten pulled to try to make it on TV with a live hit of the fire.

Remember that time, the reporter got stuck in traffic and they had me talk on mic about what I was seeing?

You can bet that possibility was on my mind.
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1 comment:

jumpcut said...

Great post and good all this behind-the-scenes stuff.