‘Chicago Fire’s Fake Plane Crash Fools Reporters, Locals

by | December 4, 2012 at 10:22 AM | Chicago Fire

Taylor Kinney in "Chicago Fire" (Photo: NBC)

False alarm!

NBC’s “Chicago Fire” staged a plane crash while filming an upcoming episode on location in Chicago that looked so real, it was reported by a local TV news station.

The firefighter drama simulated the accident on the streets near Chicago’s South Side Friday around 8 a.m. during the morning commute. The frightening scene of a downed plane, debris strewn across the ground, a giant hole in the road and a broken plane wing on top of smashed cars, stunned some onlookers who were unaware that a TV show was filming. Adding to the confusion were the police cars, firetrucks and crowds of spectators framing the shot, making it look even more convincing, according to local reports.

The incident got at least one reporter fired up once they learned the “breaking news” they were reporting was just a misunderstanding. News anchor Robin Baumgarten of Chicago’s WGN-Channel 9 exclaimed, “Are you kidding me?” after getting confirmation that the crash was fake before adding, “They might want to tell the news folks when they’re doing this… Are you kidding me?

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The fake plane crash also fooled local residents.

“When I first walked up, I thought it was real,” Charlotte Powell told NBC Chicago’s Channel 5.

“I said, ‘Wow, there’s a plane in the middle of a city street,’” said another passerby Tranae Cae. “Yes, I did, I thought it was a plane.”

A Chicago Fire Department spokesperson later told The Chicago Tribune of the production, “It looks like it didn’t get filtered down to everybody.” A spokesperson for NBCUniversal says the “usual protocol” was followed.

“Chicago Fire” airs Wednesdays at 10/9c on NBC.

Watch Chicago’s News Anchors Report Fake Plane Crash on TV: