Reading from a teleprompter Friday, KTVU news anchor Tori Campbell told viewers that the names of the pilots on Asiana Flight 214 were "Sum Ting Wong," "Wi Tu Lo," "Ho Lee Fuk" and "Bang Ding Ow." Campbell, who noted that the names had been confirmed by the National Transportation Safety Board, then continued with the broadcast, seemingly unaware of the ludicrousness of what she had just read.
KTVU has since apologized for its racist gaffe, saying that it had made "several mistakes" that had led to announcement of the phony names.
"First, we never read the names out loud, phonetically sounding them out," the news outlet said in a statement. "Then, during our phone call to the NTSB where the person confirmed the spellings of the names, we never asked that person to give us their position with the agency."
On Friday evening, NTSB issued a statement of its own apologizing for its role in the on-air faux pas. The board explained that an intern had been the person who had confirmed the pilots' names.
"A summer intern acted outside the scope of his authority when he erroneously confirmed the names of the flight crew on the aircraft," the statement read. "We work hard to ensure that only appropriate factual information regarding an investigation is released and deeply regret today's incident."
On Saturday, Campbell herself took to Twitter to apologize for the blunder:
Apologies to all upset by a story on Noon News. A serious mistake was made @KTVU. My thoughts are w/ victims of Flt 214 & families.
— Tori Campbell (@ToriKTVU) July 13, 2013
According to the Associated Press, Asiana Airlines may not be satisfied with mere apologies. The airline announced Sunday that "its reputation was damaged" by KTVU's report and that it's considering legal action.