Al Roker Gives the Weather Report from His Kitchen After Today Staffer Contracts Coronavirus
NBC announced on Monday that an employee on the 9 a.m. hour of Today had tested positive for the virus
Since a colleague on the 9 a.m. hour of the NBC morning show tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19) on Sunday, Roker and Craig Melvin have been self-isolating at home as a precaution. But that didn’t stop Roker from sharing the news with viewers across the country, using a laptop and an iPad.
“Craig and Al are out once again — we’re just being super, super cautious,” Savannah Guthrie said on-air. “There was a 9 o’clock employee, someone on the 3rd Hour of Today, who tested positive for the virus. Craig and Al had some contact, so we’re just, out of an abundance of caution, keeping them home.”
“But they feel good,” she added. “In fact, Al feels so good that he wants to do the weather.”
“I didn’t have to commute in, so I did sleep in!” Roker said with a laugh. “We’ve kind of jerry-rigged this system, so I’ve got all my graphics and everything I need.”
He also confirmed that he was, indeed, wearing pants for the broadcast.
On Monday, Roker gave viewers a heads-up about the at-home arrangement, thanking NBC’s tech support team and a few of his colleagues for helping him get set up from afar.
“Our crack #techsupport team at @nbcnews #fieldtransmission has my tech outfitted so I will be broadcasting from the Roker/Roberts #kitchen tomorrow am on @todayshow and @3rdhourtoday,” he captioned one video.
Sharing a collage of his co-workers, he wrote, “Part of the team getting yours truly on the air with @todayshow weather @3rdhourtoday. Thanks to Don Tshounikas in his home, @kathrynprociv is in @30rockefellerplaza and @brianvanaken at home. I am on my iPad so NO @nbcnews crew is with me as I hang at home out of an abundance of caution following a brief interaction with one of our producers who tested positive.”
In one Instagram video, Roker said he preferred to use the term “physical distancing” as opposed to “social distancing.”
“I think, socially, we want to connect more than ever,” he said. “To that end, I will see you tomorrow morning, live on the Today show. We’ll be coming to you live from my kitchen. Everybody’s fine here at the Roker household, and we’ll check in then.”
On Monday, NBC bass announced that they were informed overnight that a member of the third hour had been diagnosed with the respiratory virus. As the company investigates who came into contact with the coworker, employees on that team were asked to work from home.
“We are fully supporting our colleague, who is experiencing mild symptoms and receiving medical care, and I know you join me in sending our very best for a quick recovery,” said NBC News president Noah Oppenheim, adding that the company is “taking all necessary steps to ensure the health and safety of our teams, which includes multiple deep cleanings of our offices, control room, and Studio 1A.”