The mother of a 13 year old girl killed in a quad bike accident earlier this month has slammed Channel Seven for showing footage of her grieving with her deceased daughter on its website (pictured) before all family members had been told.
13-year-old Molly Lord died after a quad bike accident at Kembla Grange, near Wollongong, 12 days ago.
Linda Goldspink-Lord wrote on Facebook:
“I am the mother of the beautiful Molly Lord who was killed on a quad bike last week. I would just like to let everyone know of the paid and harassment we suffered as a result of channel 7. A reporter was on our private property very soon after the accident and whilst Molly was still on the ground. He walked up to the house down to the stables anywhere looking for a story. I went outside at some point to go to her horse for some comfort when the channel 7 helicopter flew above me trying to get footage. My husband was overseas at the time of the accident but footage of myself sitting with my deceased daughter was put on the channel 7 website for the world to see before I had even told all of my family. Channel 7 you are a disgrace and what should have been a private moment between a mother and (get) daughter was exploited for the sake of an exclusive story. You bastards.”
There are claims the comment posted on the Seven News website had 32,000 likes but was deleted.
Now the Facebook page for Seven News Sydney has been flooded with a tirade of angry comments.
Comment has been sought from Seven.
UPDATED: A Seven spokesperson told TV Tonight, “Seven News apologises for the distress caused by the vision. In removing the vision we also inadvertently removed the comments. We are seeking to restore the comments to the page.”
Chris Willis Director of Seven News Sydney said, “Mrs Goldspink-Lord’s comments were removed from our site in error. We apologise for that. Taking into account her understandable distress over the coverage of Molly’s death, I did ask for the footage to be taken down. That happened but unfortunately her remarks were deleted as well. They are now being restored to our Facebook page. I would also like to stress that we have re-examined our reports into Molly’s tragic death and can find no video showing Mrs Goldspink-Lord hugging her daughter. We were not the only television station to visit the family’s property. Our reporter did go to the house but left immediately he was told the family wished to make no comment. Our reporters and camera crews know that grieving families have to be approached with sensitivity and compassion.”
In 2008 reporters from Channels Nine and TEN were injured when angry locals turned on members of the media covering a drowning tragedy in New South Wales.
In December the The Australian Communications and Media Authority stepped up its Privacy Guidelines after its own research indicated people believed extensive footage of a person grieving was an invasion of privacy.
Quad bikes now kill twice as many people on farms as tractors, but there are no laws governing their use, such as wearing helmets. Further info via Farmsafe.org.au