Chicago TV Anchors Larry Potash and Robin Baumgarten Report Fake Plane Crash As Real [Video]

Americans live in an era when the virtual and the real can blend together, when reality TV is secretly staged, and online mischief can get you fired in real life. But it's still unusual for news anchors to report as fact something that is completely fake.

But on Friday, "WGN Morning News" anchors Larry Potash and Robin Baumgarten tried to hurriedly alert their audiences to a plane crash on a major Chicago thoroughfare. The anchors were confused that there weren't any ambulances present, even though there was a giant hole in the pavement, a fractured plane, and several crashed cars.
There weren't any ambulances present, because no one was actually hurt. The scene was staged for the NBC series "Chicago Fire." In the middle of their broadcast of this "story," the anchors learned the truth when a staffer told them via their headsets; after a pregnant pause, Potash let out an "Aaaah."

"We are just getting word that this is being shot as part of a TV show," Potash told the TV audience.

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"Are you kidding me?" said a more frazzled Baumgarten. "They might want to tell the news folks when they're doing this and shutting down King Drive. Are you kidding me? Are you kidding me?"

Soon after the segment aired, the Chicago Fire Department confirmed via tweet that the catastrophic scene was "a simulation."

The news station wasn't the only one fooled by the scene. "I thought it was a plane crash, for real, for real," a young passerby told Chicago.

It isn't the first fake story to slip into the news cycle this week. China's Communist Party newspaper mistook -- as the real deal -- a report by the satirical paper, The Onion, which declared North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un its "Sexiest Men Alive." It posted a 55-page photo spread on its website Tuesday in homage to the stocky despot.

But unlike The People's Daily, the WGN team were quick to mock themselves in a series of tweets with the hashtag #PlaneCrashFail.

"So WGN is reporting that Lake MI is shrinking," they retweeted from one of their viewers. "Are they sure it isnt just being drained for an ep of "Chicago Fire"?

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Oh my, that was hilarious. But hey, they were going to be the first to get the news out.

December 04 2012 at 12:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

How are they idiots? They are sitting in a News room and have no idea until someone tells them. WHoever first alerted them is the idiot not the news casters.

December 02 2012 at 8:11 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Kelly's comment

So right Kelly... bunch of world renowned scholars on this board that think they know everything & can do it better. They are the idiots.

December 03 2012 at 4:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

2 IDIOTS.......I bet they voted for ROMNEY

December 02 2012 at 8:04 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to cooky1ps's comment

Maybe you can explain to the public,why you think they are idiots ,irregardless of political association ?If you looked at he photo,without captions,what is the first thing that came to mind ? I was not a Romney supporter.but injecting him in this article,wasw idiotic .

December 02 2012 at 8:25 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Hahaha I would have been to pissed off if that was me!

December 02 2012 at 7:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

A city the size of Chicago should notify the public when a movie is being filmed, especially depicting a disaster.

December 02 2012 at 7:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

So a news Helicopter was passing by and saw this scene, what would you expect them to do? They fly around, looking for news! It certainly looked like a plane crash.

It's the same thing every time a celebrity calls a few friends and has them grab their cameras and meet their incoming plane, so they can act all bothered and harassed by Pap's like you guys reported 2 days ago...

December 02 2012 at 7:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I agree Robin does mispronounce many words ( like an old granny that never went to school) for a news anchor and is a real corn ball. It's like watching morning TV in a rural town somewhere where a cat up a tree or Earl just bought a new plow , would be the story, instead of Chicago news. As for WGN itself , it is a great a station and channel, and has many excellent reporters and were one of the best stations for children's shows back in the 1950's & 1960's.

December 02 2012 at 6:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


December 02 2012 at 5:25 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Can't get past the weatherman's jeans. He looks awful.

December 02 2012 at 12:11 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I'm here in Chi town Robin & Larry are actually very good at what they do. It isn't like the Faux (Fox) network. Maybe the mayor or one of his cronies should have let them know. I find it a crock that they claim they were told. Pffttt

December 01 2012 at 11:14 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to xblndeeoo4x's comment

I find your post to be a crock.

December 01 2012 at 11:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to aspman07's comment

Aspman... I don't know you . You don't me . That's your opinion. My opinion is you can kick rocks. Nuff said. No need for you to be rude. I did NOT attack you. It is a message board. Because, I think it's a crock so what. Go watch PBS or porn whatever you do with your time.

December 02 2012 at 1:18 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down

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