Reporter apologizes for smoking

A former KARE reporter has apologized for, apparently, being human. Brad Woodard was reporting on a fire for a TV station in Houston last Friday when the camera caught him taking a drag on a cigarette.

Smoking a cigarette in Texas, for the record, is legal and many reporters smoke. It’s not as if he started the fire with his cigarette or shot a puppy before the broadcast.

Still, Woodard felt compelled to apologize on the station’s Facebook page:

Dear Viewers,

Some of you have raised concerns about my live report from Chambers County on Friday, June 24th. Due to a technical glitch, I was observed on camera smoking and extinguishing a cigarette, something I find both professionally and personally embarrassing. I was reporting from the scene of… a fire at an abandoned “tank farm” formerly used to store petroleum products. The fire was well under control at the time of my report, and I was standing on concrete when I discarded my cigarette. I also made sure it was extinguished following my brief report.

Apparently, some of you are under the impression I was reporting from the scene of a wild fire. That was not the case. My bad habit aside, I’m very cognizant of the extreme drought conditions facing this state. I report on those conditions daily and care very deeply about those affected. That said, I sincerely apologize to those of you who were offended. We appreciate…I appreciate…your viewership and your concerns.


Brad Woodard

His viewers apparently understood, judging by some of the comments:

I think honestly, this puts you on a different light for me. More human bring than some Iconic God type of personality. Im glad that you are humble enough to apologize, even if it’s unnecessary. Personally, I believe smokers have been stripped of their rights! Keep on keeping on! You shouldn’t have to worry about others opinions, but I understand wanting to maintain the professional image.

Good point. You can’t smoke and still be a professional in the journalism business.

  • Bob Moffitt

    Don’t expect me to throw the first stone. I’m a former smoker myself, and I have friends and relatives who smoke. To paraphrase a line from church, we love the smoker, but hate the smoke.

    Our job at the American Lung Association in Minnesota is to help people quit (or better yet, never start) smoking, not to judge them.

    I think a lot of smokers are embarassed by their habit, which they know is bad for them. I feel the same way about the 25 extra pounds I’m carrying right now.

  • John P.

    It’s the times. Sure, smoking is bad for you. We all know that by now, but anti-smoking rhetoric sometimes borders on hysteria. It’s enough to make me want to start again just to spite Clearway Minnesota. Who the heck ARE they, anyway?

  • Adam Johnson

    When a reporter drops a butt on the ground without looking while reporting on a fire story, he needs to apologize.

    No one is saying he is a poor reporter. He just comes across as a poor citizen.

    If you can smoke away from non-smokers and discard your butts in the trash, I have no problem. But when I have to walk through a cloud of smoke to get to work, or see piles of butts in the street, or watch people flick their butts out their car windows that is when I get angry.

    That video says that smokers don’t care. The apology explains that he does.

  • Bob Moffitt

    John P.: ClearWay Minnesota is a nonprofit focused on reducing smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke in Minnesota. They were created as part of the tobacco settlement that the state and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of MN reached with Big Tobacco in 1988.

    They are funded by a small piece (3%) of that settlement.

    Their offices are in Bloomington, MN. I have worked closely with them on several projects, including the Freedom to Breathe Act of 2007.

  • bench

    …Says the man who tweets about smoking cigars 😉

  • Bob Collins

    I would never think to apologize about enjoying a good cigar every now and then.