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Columbus TV Newsrooms Review Reporter Safety

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WDBJ TV
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The fatal on-air shooting of two Virginia TV journalists stunned newsrooms. Management at all three Columbus broadcast stations moved quickly to review safety procedures for reporting crews.

In the Virginia murders, a gunman walked within several feet of a reporter and cameraman doing a live on-air interview and opened fire. WBNS TV, Assistant News Director, Karen Salajko says the shootings will prompt a safety review locally.

"I would definitely say there is anxiety among our reporters and photographers," says Salajko. "This is what they do on a daily basis."

Salajko says precautions are routine when crews are sent to crime scenes or volatile protests. But the Virginia station was doing a story with a local chamber of commerce official.

"So not what you would expect to happen. Perhaps when you're at a crime scene you're probably a little bit more alert of you surroundings when they're searching for someone but this was complete and total shock to everyone involved," says Salajko.

Officials at Channels 6 and 4 are also reviewing ways they protect reporting crews.