Hurricane Irene: ‘Today’ show assesses coverage

August 29, 2011

In this segment of the Today show, Matt Lauer interviews Al Roker and Weather Channel experts Jim Cantore and Bryan Norcross on media coverage of Hurricane Irene. Did it go overboard?

The panel concludes in the negative. Storm coverage, they agreed, should err on the side of caution. The pre-storm hype and warnings were more than justified.

Roker: “Think about this: This is a minimal Category 1 storm. Twenty-three people have lost their lives. How many more people would have died or could have died if this had been a stronger storm.”

Norcross: “If I were to say to you that there’s a one-in-ten chance that you’re going to die if you don’t fix the wheel on your car when you leave the studio this morning.... would you deal with a one-in-ten chance of life and death? Most people would not.”

Lauer concludes the session by telling the Weather Channel people, “Guys, good job yesterday.” No mention that the Weather Channel is owned in part by NBC.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.
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