Along with emergency professionals, journalists are often "first responders" when an earthquake or a terrorist attack devastate a community. Large-scale disasters challenge reporters on the ground and newsroom managers alike, both in the midst of a breaking crisis and for months or years afterward.
On the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, we asked seven journalists, a news executive and a clinician from the Gulf Coast to reflect on their experiences and what they’ve learned in the decade since. Scroll down for excerpts, and click to the right for full pieces from Eve Troeh, Clarence Williams, Stan Tiner, Debbie Fleming Caffery, John Pope, Joy Osofsky, June Cross, Russell Lewis and Mark Schleifstein.
Over the last three weeks, a pair of powerful earthquakes shook Nepal, resulting in the deaths of more than 8,000 people. The Dart Center spoke with journalists Russell Lewis and Amantha Perera, and clinician Patrice Keats, about the challenges of covering this tragedy, including verifying information in a time of emergency, speaking with families of missing people, and working through the personal challenges of covering trauma.
Amy Wilentz, journalist and author of "Farewell, Fred Voodoo: A Letter From Haiti," reflects on the five-year anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti.
Anniversaries mark progress and the passage of time. They can also conjure memories we may not always want to face. On this anniversary of the September 11 attacks, the Dart Center calls attention to a uniquely eloquent journalistic record of the attacks' long aftermath; to a powerful tenth anniversary essay on personal loss and collective historical memory; and to resources available as we seek to better cover, and understand, the longterm effects of horrific events.
Korean reporters covering the Sewol ferry disaster faced challenges they were not prepared for. Here, they offer their advice and tips for colleagues on the lessons they learned, and the preparation they wish they had before facing coverage of such a tragedy. Click here to read Chong ae Lee's full report on Korea's national tragedy.
American Red Cross
Fact sheets, preparedness checklists, recovery guides and other helpful information.
A set of resources from David Shedden at the Poynter Institute related to the September 11th attacks.
International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies
A variety of educational materials for clinicians and individuals to use in response to terror attacks around the world.
National Center for PTSD
On the anniversary of traumatic events, some people may find that they experience an increase in distressing memories of the event. This fact sheet examines responses to the anniversary of the September 11th attacks.
Investigative Reporters and Editors
Resources compiled for past breaking news stories by Investigative Reporters and Editors, Inc. Topics include tanker crashes, earthquakes, severe winter storms, building collapses, wildfires and hurricanes.
Editor and Publisher
Joe Strupp and Doug Cosper discuss the problems faced by journalists in extreme situations, with emphasis on the challenges faced at the World Trade Center after 9/11.
National Transportation Safety Board
A brief overview to assist journalists covering the first few days of a National Transportation Safety Board accident investigation.
National Transportation Safety Board
Advice and links to other resources.
2007 Ochberg Fellow Lisa Millar talks about trauma journalism on the National Media Report.
A 40-page guide to help journalists, photojournalists and editors report on violence while protecting both victims and themselves. Click here for a Ukrainian translation.
This documentary, available online and on DVD, features a wide range of Australian journalists their recounting experiences covering traumatic stories.
Your contributions help the Dart Center nurture informed, innovative and ethical news reporting on violence, conflict and tragedy worldwide.
The Dart Center is a project of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.