An NBC News correspondent was temporarily blinded by a malfunctioning camera light while covering the Michael Dunn trial in Jacksonville, Fla., TVNewser reports.
Kerry Sanders wrote in a letter to friends and colleagues: “I was in front of a TV camera from 7:30am until 5:30pm reporting for the TODAY Show, MSNBC and Nightly News. The HMI light malfunctioned and the UV light was slowly burning my corneas, as well as frying the skin on my face. Not only could I not see, but my eyes burned in pain as if two hot coals smoldered in my sockets. The darkness lasted a frightening 36-hours. I still see foggy halos and out-of-focus views. The doctors say my eyesight will eventually return to normal.”
Sanders wrote that he suspected something was wrong when he felt increasing pain.
“But hey, I’m the guy who toughed out a deadly scorpion bite on assignment in Afghanistan. I’ve marched into Iraq embedded with the toughest of the toughs, the US Marines. I can push through this, right?” he wrote.
In agony, he made his way to the ER, where doctors “concluded my corneas were fried.”
His eyesight is now about 80% returned, he noted.
When he returns to work, the first thing he plans to examine is “those damned HMI lights, in the off-position, of course," he wrote. "Right now I’m not sure what to look for, but you can be sure I’m going to find out. And if being around camera lights is anywhere in your job description, you should too.”