Fire Alarm Interrupts “NBC Nightly News”

Brian Williams assures viewers everyone is safe

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Brian Williams is interrupted with a fire alarm while anchoring NBC Nightly News. (Published Wednesday, Nov 30, 2011)

    It’s alarming how Brian Williams always keeps his cool.

    The veteran “NBC Nightly News” anchor was interrupted by a blaring fire alarm and voice announcement from the opening moments of Tuesday’s east coast broadcast, though that didn’t stop him from continuing on with trademark gravitas.

    “You’ll forgive us, we have a fire alarm announcement going on here in the studio,” Williams said before plowing ahead with his lead story on American Airlines’ bankruptcy filing.

    As Williams continued to do his thing, the alarm droned on in the background.

    It broke into a high-pitched siren shortly before Williams passed on the AA story to reporter Tom Costello. At that point Williams broke into a grin and reassured viewers there was “no danger” to those in studio.

    “I’m glad you’re okay,” Costello shot back.

    The alarm continued to sound through a commercial break, and ultimately filled two-thirds of the program, Poynter reported.

    Williams signed off by saying, "we hope to get all quiet and see you tomorrow night."

    NBC spokeswoman Erika Masonhall later tweeted: "This is the first fire alarm in our @nbcnightlynews studio. System should have been shut off -- but clearly still working out the kinks." 

    The broadcast was reshot for west coast and MSNBC.com viewers.