with Annie Kim
by Jerry Guarino
And those are the
headlines. Lets check in with Annie Kim and
Traffic Stop. The readers should imagine
themselves in front of a large screen television
where Annie Kim is driving the traffic stop
Thanks Bob. Well,
here on the 405 its a typical LA drive time
adventure. Some kids in a mustang speeding down
the emergency lane and my producer Juan and I are
trying to avoid some motorcycles weaving in and
out of the fast lanes.
A two-way camera is mounted
in front of the traffic stop van providing a
unique perspective as viewers at home see both
Annie driving and the road ahead. These live
traffic reports have bumped their news ratings up
Bob, back at the anchor
desk voices over the live feed. Looks like
youre giving us a front row seat Annie.
Thats right Bob.
You can almost feel what were
Annie screams and slams on the brakes. Annie and
Juan lunge forward and the inside windshield is
sprayed with a take out menu, some Mexican food
leftovers, soft drinks and reporter notes. Hip-hop
music blares from a nearby El Camino low rider.
I think were all right Bob, but that
was close. The traffic stop van continues
down the freeway.
Normally, traffic reporters
hitch a ride with a news helicopter or report
from the studio while watching camera feeds.
Helicopters are often grounded by weather and
their perspective is from a mile off the ground.
Reporting from a studio is even more remote and
lacks the sounds of the road. Traffic Stop had
revolutionized traffic reporting, even making it
interesting and no other station had it.
Im telling you
at home. If you dont have to drive, dont.
There must be a full moon, eh Juan. The
viewers see Juan nod in agreement. As I was
going to say, were approaching the 10 in
Culver City and were just getting back up
to cruising speed. A farm vehicle cuts the
van off. Annie screams again, slams on the brakes.
Annie and Juan are sent forward again. The inside
windshield is sprayed with donuts, plastic
utensils and a hairbrush. Outside, a chicken
bounces off the windshield and we hear squawks
and panicked chicken sounds. Some mariachis band
music comes up from a pickup truck on their left.
Bob interjects from the
studio. Annie, maybe its time you
called it a day.
Annie composes herself and
they continue driving. No way, Bob, but
this does remind me of driving in Rome. We just
passed the 10, heading towards the Marina freeway
and Inglewood. Things are starting to calm down
ahead of us. We can see the farmer in our rear
view mirror picking up poultry and some pigs
running in between cars, holding up traffic
behind them. Juan takes some notes and
shakes his head. Threes the charm
We see a picture in picture
pop up box for the weather reporter. Annie,
you wont believe this, but we are hearing
that strong cross winds are headed right for you.
Maybe you should call it a day.
Annie hits the accelerator.
Not now. I think our viewers at home would
like to see how this ends.
But the traffic lightened
and there were no more incidents for the moment.
False alarm, Bob. We dont see
anything that would indicate strong cross winds.
You might as well go to a commercial. As
Annie and Juan continued down the freeway, an
ambulance siren is heard from behind them.
Coming out of commercial,
Bob throws it back to the traffic reporter.
Folks, were going to rejoin Annie in
Traffic Stop, just to make sure theyre all
The television screen flips
back. Bob, I think we have an ambulance
coming up on our left. Were going to pull
over. Well see if we can catch up to give
you a first hand report.
The traffic stop van
eventually caught up to the accident. A semi-tractor
truck had spun off the road, blocking the two
right hand lanes. The back doors were open and
you could almost see what was falling out, slowly
jamming traffic. Suddenly, something flew up in
front of their van. It was a super ball; in fact
it was hundreds of super balls. Were
almost there Bob. It looks like. Annie
screamed and slammed on the brakes. Annie and
Juan were thrown forward again. The inside of the
windshield was sprayed with burger wrappers,
French fries and water bottles. Outside, the
front of the windshield was pelted with dozens of
super balls. You could hear metal music loud and
clear from a motorcycle sliding by, trying to
avoid the rubber obstacles. The van now looked
like it had been through some sort of Halloween
prank. The camera shot returned to Annie.
And thats the
way the way the ball bounces. This is Annie Kim
with Traffic Stop for KOOK in Los Angeles. Back
to you Bob.