Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Banished by Blizzard: WPIX Reporter Dan Mannarino Misses Live Shots Due to Snowed-In Truck

By Jerry Barmash

It’s a worst case scenario for a reporter covering a blizzard–not having the ability to go live. However, snowstorms make difficult “partners.” WPIX newsman Dan Mannarino was all set for for his Saturday morning coverage until the accompanying live truck got snowed in.

Mannarino and the truck operator left New York City Friday night, taking four and a half hours to reach their destination in Suffolk County, which was expected to feel the brunt of the storm in our area. They arrived during the overnight hours in Commack, Exit 53 of the Long Island Expressway.

Related: FishbowlNY, Wragge Shines Through Blizzard in WCBS’ Mobile 2

PIX 11 Live Truck
WPIX began its blizzard “programming” at 7 a.m. with Mannarino planning to show viewers the unplowed highway. However, Mannarino and the truck operator split up to catch a few hours of sleep. The reporter went to a nearby hotel, while the driver stayed at his house a mile away. It turned out to be a serious error in judgment.

“In the morning he went to leave,” Mannarino tells FishbowlNY. “Taking the truck over to me, he drove two blocks and the truck got stuck on the side of the road.”

With two feet of snow and no plows in sights, the WPIX truck had no way of reaching Mannarino, meaning the live reporting would be scrapped.

But the conscientious reporter had no designs of spending the day in the hotel.

“I called the DPW [Department of Public Works] of that town and they came and sent a plow to get him out. That plow got stuck.” Mannarino says.

As the clock ticked down before his first shot in 45 minutes, Mannarino says a front loader was brought to the scene to remove mounds of snow. In the process, the plow was removed. The Channel 11 mobile unit, though, could not able to be extricated.

Now with a live truck and the rescuing plow casualties of the snowstorm, Mannarino took matters into his own hands. He walked several blocks to the L.I.E. where he shot some photos of abandoned vehicles on the snow-covered road.

“I did photo interviews from my location,”  Mannarino says. “Because that’s all I could do while the truck was being dug out… From where I was, there was 30 inches and I couldn’t bring that to the viewer. It was very frustrating.”

Finally, Mannarino was reunited with his truck for a live report at 6 p.m. on the Nesconset Highway in Lake Grove.

In summing up, it’s Mannarino’s feeling next time the two of them must be at the same location, even if it means going live from the hotel parking lot.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is a great human interest story and it gives the public an opportunity to see that Union members are real human beings that live in their neighborhoods, have kids that go to school with their kids and really care about what happens in America to American families. This type of story needs to be on national media so all American workers can be informed about Unions. But right now there isn't any way that a single Union, State Organization or even the AFL-CIO can accomplish it.

Labor Needs a "National Advertising Program!"

A National Advertising Program could be used to discuss economic policies and their effect on working families. It could discuss Trade Legislation and its history of destroying American manufacturing jobs - all for more short term profits for international corporations.

Beyond economic policy, a National Advertising Program could be used to explain the proper role that Labor Unions have played in supporting the middle-class/working-class families in America and other nations as well. 30 second commercials sell billions/trillions of dollars of products and services every year and the AFL-CIO should be "in the game."

How would a National Advertising Program be funded? It's easy - with 12 to 14 million Union members - each Union would support a advertising fee of $1 to $2 dollars each month. This should bring in approximately anywhere from $60 to $200 million just for advertising the American Dream and how it can be achieved by having a Union.

The Labor Movement needs to tell its own story! The American people need to know the truth about the economy and how Labor Unions have benefitted their lives even when they didn't have a Union.

Labor can't afford to let anti-worker, anti-Union forces to continue to tell lies about workers' Unions. Labor must correct the perception that the Repulsive Party, the "No Rights at Work Foundation," the corporate "Heritage Foundation" and the hundred other big money groups, have created about the Labor Movement.

Every Union member knows what is happening in the mid-west with the Repulsive Party passing "No Rights at Work" legislation and killing pensions and medical coverage for working families. This is happening because American working families (Voters) aren't being told the truth about what these actions are doing to their future earning power. Does anyone believe that the Reps would get away with their attacks when working families knew the truth?

The AFL-CIO is the only organization that can do this - establish a National Advertising Program.

The AFL-CIO Executive Board is meeting at the end of this month. If every Union member contacts their Union President maybe they will demand that a National Advertising Program be put on their meeting agenda.

Workers need Unions and with a National Advertising Program we can turn the economic conditions and the Labor Movement around and begin to rebuild.

Call your Union President this week!

Richard Slawson