Live television cameras caught the stomach-turning moment a reporter was vomited on during a broadcast interview.
KTLA reporter Wendy Burch was covering the annual Hermosa Beach Iron Man on Tuesday, a competition with the motto, “Run, Paddle, Chug!” according to a follow up story by Burch featured in the Huffington Post.
Competitors in the annual July 4 event run one mile, paddle board one mile and then chug a six-pack of beer, without vomiting. Burch was interviewing one competitor during the chugging part of the challenge for the KTLA Morning News when things took a turn for the worse.
“It’s getting ugly,” Burch remarked after the camera panned to her side to get a shot of one bikini-clad woman vomiting in the sand. Burch noted that the woman, Sarah, had been trying to finish her six-pack of beer.
“It looks like you’ve been training for this for some time,” Burch said to the competitor she was interviewing.
“I’ve been training for this for about 25 years,” he replied, just as someone off-camera projectile vomited all over the man, hitting Burch as well. The video appeared to freeze at that point and cameras returned to the studio where the reactions of KTLA anchors was priceless.
Burch recalled the moment in her piece in HuffPo:
I grabbed a guy who appeared to be a spirited competitor, and from the evidence of his beer belly, had been clearly training for this event for years.
My hope was that his broad… ah, erh… shoulders, could shield our morning viewers from the ups—and from what wasn’t staying down—in this competition. What I didn’t notice until later, is that he had a bullseye drawn on his back with the words “puke here” written in magic marker.
And wouldn’t you know it? Someone took him up on the offer right during the middle of my live report, much to the chagrin, of me, our anchors and anyone in Southern California who may have been eating breakfast at that very moment.
Burch did not realize that the broadcast had returned to the studio and assumed she was still live.
“So, for the better part of the next two minutes, I just kept interviewing drunken people. while sudsy substances flew in the air and landed in my hair,” she wrote. “Let’s say, after that, it was a wrap.”
Video of the interview went viral and Burch, who went home to take a shower and a nap after the incident, wrapped up her thoughts on her sudden fame with some advice to future journalists.
“You know… I once had a nightmare about reporting live, in the middle of a mosh pit. with hundreds of sweaty men throwing up all around me,” she wrote.
“To all of you aspiring journalists out there,” she added, “I’m here to tell you, dreams really do come true… especially in the age of viral videos.”
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