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Dublin: 15 °C Sunday 15 September, 2019
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WATCH: NBC anchor keeps cool while fire alarm interrupts broadcast

Brian Williams doesn’t do panic. Brian Williams doesn’t do interruptions. Brian Williams doesn’t oblige by health and safety guidelines.

MILLIONS OF PEOPLE watching a flagship news programme in the US last night were treated to an oddly amusing sight – as a fire alarm went off live in studio just as the broadcast began.

Brian Williams – a second-generation Irishman, considered one of the most authoritative news voices in the US – had just began a report on the bankruptcy of American Airlines when he was interrupted by a bell behind him.

He had read just one sentence before being interrupted by an announcement over the studio’s public address system – which kicked in after just four seconds of his broadcast.

“You’ll forgive us – we have a fire alarm going off in the studio,” Williams calmly quipped, before continuing his report on how the airline had lost €650m in the first nine months of the year.

45 seconds in, the announcement was replaced by a larger more prominent siren – but, unbowed, Williams still calmly handed over the broadcast to a reporter in Washington.

Total pro. Williams has hosted NBC’s nightly bulletins since 2004, and has been described as a “modern Walter Cronkite”, such is the universal respect he commands within the industry.

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Gavan Reilly

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