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2013 Atlantic Journalism Awards Finalists


Slug/Label Duckworth Street Fire
Date Aired or Published September 4, 2013
Media outlet where first aired or published: 590 VOCM
Name of Program: Duckworth Street Fire
If co-produced, list partner: n/a
Location: St. John's
List awards, grants: n/a
Running time (TV/Radio): 1:37 - :52 - 1:56 - 1:05 Total: 5:34

Short explanation of the story and how it developed:

It was just after 10 a.m. Wednesday, Sept.4, 2013 when the VOCM newsroom first received a call of a fire in downtown St. John's. Reporter Danielle Barron headed to Duckworth Street and was the first reporter on scene. Though flames were barely visible early on, smoke was seen coming from the eaves of three adjoining structures. Danielle was first on the air within half-an-hour of arriving breaking into normal programming. As the fire intensified, Danielle described neighbouring evacuations, the difficulties for firefighters and the total loss of property and history for business owners and residents. She continued to file every half hour until 1:30 p.m. when the fire was brought under control. The section of Duckworth Street affected was closed for a week as city crews work to secure a retaining wall before tearing down and removing the charred remains. Asbestos abatement was also required. The RNC eventually said the fire was accidental but couldn't determine how the blaze started.

Resources of the newsroom (money and time) available to complete the story:

The VOCM Newsroom consists of 12 full-time and 3 part-time reporters and news anchors. Danielle Barron is the legislative reporter, but also covers breaking news. O. This day she single-handedly carried live coverage from the scene of a fire that destroyed several attached buildings in an older area of downtown St. John's Danielle was the first reporter on the scene, first to go live, and first to send pictures to social media sites and the VOCM website.

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