This week, as part of our ongoing feature to spotlight excellence in Atlantic Canadian Journalism, we take a deeper look at ‘Snowmageddon’ published by the St. John’s Telegram.
Written by municipal politics reporter Juanita Mercer, the piece was recognized as the ‘gold winner’ in the Breaking/Spot News Reporting (newspaper) category at the Atlantic Journalism Awards held this past June.
Mercer’s story covered the impact a January blizzard had on the city of St. John’s, which sent the city into an eight-day state of emergency.
How did the story develop?
Said Mercer: “I was the lone reporter scheduled to work Friday evening and Saturday after the St. John’s metro area declared a state of emergency due to a record-breaking blizzard, but the blizzard also caused a series of other stories to develop. Other than publishing details about the storm and the state of emergency, I also covered two avalanches — one in The Battery and one in Sunnyside — and a man also went missing during the storm. I was quite busy keeping our website and social media feeds updated.
I interviewed Premier Dwight Ball, St. John’s Mayor Danny Breen, emergency responders and people whose properties were damaged, I wrote the stories and posted them to our website. I also tweeted updates as they happened.”
You can read all the stories in the series here.