A San Francisco Bay Area television station and the National Transportation Safety Board apologised on Friday after the station reported bogus names for the pilots on board the Asiana Airlines flight that crashed last week based on information from a summer intern at the board.

“The NTSB has confirmed these are the names of the pilots on board Flight 214 when it crashed,” Tori Campbell, an anchor for Fox affiliate KTVU said on its noon bulletin on Friday, citing the safety board, which is investigating the crash. She gave the names as Sum Ting Wong and Wi Tu Lo, among others which sounded suspiciously like broad Korean language stereotypes.

But hours later, the safety board released a statement apologising “for inaccurate and offensive names that were mistakenly confirmed as those of the pilots of Asiana Flight 214”. The agency said “in response to an inquiry from a media outlet, a summer intern acted outside the scope of his authority when he erroneously confirmed the names of the flight crew on the aircraft”. It said it does not release or confirm names of people in accidents to the media and “appropriate actions will be taken to ensure that such a serious error is not repeated”.

Another death

Also on Friday, hospital officials said that a third person had died as a result of injuries sustained in the crash. The girl, whose name and age were not released at the request of her parents, had been in critical condition. And the authorities said one of the two earlier victims was hit by a firetruck while covered with firefighting foam. It was unclear whether the victim, Ye Meng Yuan (16) was already dead when the truck struck. — New York Times News Service

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