Australian radio hosts who made prank call to royal hospital taken off air over nurse's death

Dec 7, 2012 Full story: The Independent 298

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Elias

Glen Waverley, Australia

#231 Dec 10, 2012
Reasonable questions Sid;
SID wrote:
<quoted text>the element of surprise makes a prank a prank. A radio station is hardly going to send a request for a waiver before the program to Jack if they had tapes they intend to air of Bill screwing Jacks girlfriend..
The point is pranks are currently "on hold" across all commercial radio stations. How they get around this minefield of litigation will be something the courts and radio stations will have to manage.
SID wrote:
<I don't get your example of the overweight person, could a woman sue a newspaper for a photo of her with no make up on.
If the Saldanha case ends up with the radio station being liable (and that's if) then the basic precedence is that if a media outlet presents either an image or a voice of an indivuidual that is construed to "demean" or "humiliate" the indivudual and (critically) is done without their consent, then that media outlet could potentially face litigation. Currently this happens in online newspapers where videos from youtube are uploaded showing people getting beaten up by bullies or grossly disfigured or overweight people paraded online for humor.
Yep

Sydney, Australia

#232 Dec 10, 2012
What you are all failing to appreciate is that the hospital - catering to elite clientele as it was -- would/should have had security protocols in place at the outset to prevent prank/random calls being transferred

Next, the royal are cloaked in security at all times. Or do people believe they dropped Kate off at the hospital and said,'Well, she's fine, she's in bed at the hospital, so we security staff can take a few days off and go to the beach. She'll be fine there in the hospital, no need to worry'

??--- anyone believe that ?

The royal pregnancy had been hyped to the rooftops during the preceding several days. And we know that the palace is inundated with well-wishers at such times (royal weddings, births, illnesses, etc.) Some people would have tried already to present flowers for Kate at the hospital. There are those who may have tried to present the hospital with little bottles of 'Grandma's famous morning sickness potion', etc. etc. So the hospital would have been crawling with security, albeit discreet

AND all staff at the hospital would have been instructed on how to deal with incoming calls from well-meaning and/or crazy members of the public

The weird thing about the deceased-nurse's reaction to the prank call is that it's possible she was expecting it. Bit difficult to say with any certainty, considering she was on the phone with the pranksters for less than five seconds

If she *was* expecting it -- if she *was* primed -- if it *had* been arranged that she and not a regular switchboard operator should be at the switch at that particular time .......... then it implies there was at least one other party involved

and it doesn't take a Rhodes Scholarship to surmise that this 'other' individual had links with the radio station. So did money change hands so the prank could be facilitated ?

and if so, could that other party or one closely aligned with the prank kill the nurse?

*IF* someone killed the nurse, would they reasonably have such a knee-jerk that they killed her so close to the hospital in the midst of the 'prank call' frenzy and publicity ? Further, the royals had publicly joked about the prank - Charles even jokingly referred to the radio station itself. So why kill the nurse when at the time, everyone was laughing and joking about it and it was already on its way to being Yesterday's news?

The question remains: how and by whom was it arranged (if in fact it was) that both the hospital and palace security teams lowered their guard at precisely the same time as the prank call was made, thus arranging for a nurse and not the usual admin staff to take that incoming call ?

The other thing that niggles is the deceased-nurse's ready acceptance of the DJs as being the Queen ? They didn't sound anything like the Queen. The Charles impersonation was far superior, but according to the radio-tapes, it was the fake Queen to whom the nurse spoke

So I'm wondering if the call we've heard was not in fact the same voice heard by the deceased nurse

Is it possible the radio station created a section of tape cut from actual recordings of the Queen's voice ? Is that what the deceased nurse heard and does it explain why she so readily accepted it --- especially if she'd been put on the switch deliberately and primed to expect a call from the palace ?

One thing's for sure, both hospital and palace security heads are in very hot water, particularly now someone has died, thus casting a shadow over what should have been a joyous occasion for the royal family and the Commonwealth

“We don't have to take it”

Since: Jun 08

WhereTFamI?

#233 Dec 10, 2012
Adhamh Shane wrote:
<quoted text>
This is all irrelevent to my comment. This was your response when I suggested that the nurse probably copped some flack from the hospital management:
"It has been reported in a multitude of newspapers right from the very start, that the hospital did NOT reprimand either nurse and had no plans to do so. If they had done what they've been accused of, then it would have been revealed by now."
I don't wish to get into a war of words with you, but your comment seems pretty clear to me - now you shift the goal posts and say:
"whether they [the hospital management] did that or not doesn't change the fact that the phone call was the catalyst."
Of course you "wish to get into a war of words" with me, this is what your comments are all about - bringing me to task about something I said which you think is contradictory to what I said previously.

I did NOT say the hospital did NOT reprimand her, I stated what they had been saying from the word go... that they DIDN'T reprimand her and had no intentions of doing so. And I can't imagine in my wildest dreams that a false statement would have been made by a high profile hospital such as that, to the press, to be echoed by the media a thousand times, if it could so easily be immediately discounted.

You said you bet they did - I posted what they reported. I never once said they did or didn't.

THEN I said that I find it hard to believe that they didn't... because I was nursing for nearly 40 years and I know only too well how hospitals operate - the blame is always shifted onto the lackeys if they can get away with it.

I don't know first hand what the hospital did or did not do, but am giving it the benefit of the doubt that what they said is the truth, until proved different.

And what I said before is so "relevant" - doesn't matter what the hospital did, doesn't matter what frame of mind she was in - the phone call started all this shit... the blame lies entirely with the radio station, it's code of ethics and it's staff.

Stop giving me grief with petty nit picking - there's plenty of other things I say you could knock your self out with!
Yep

Sydney, Australia

#234 Dec 10, 2012
Meant to add that amongst the security protocols which *should* have prevented the prank call from getting anywhere, would have been a special 'code' pre-arranged with the hospital by the palace

next: the Queen herself would not place the call, obviously. Someone would have done so on her behalf

and because of privacy concerns, the call would have been routed in sophisticated manner to prevent hospital staff from tracing the call and thus obtaining the Queen's and/or palace's numbers

So while the publicity is being deliberately focused on the radio personalities, it's the behind the scenes mechanations which are crucial to the case and which are actually being investigated while the public concentrates on the pranksters and nurse

It took a LOT of arranging for that call to get past security-barrier one, to begin with

Circumventing security protocols doesn't just 'happen'. It takes money, organisation, orchestration and several individuals in-the-know

at the moment, those responsible are lurking in the shadows while the radio DJs are being paraded for the mob
Elias

Glen Waverley, Australia

#235 Dec 10, 2012
Yep wrote:
The weird thing about the deceased-nurse's reaction to the prank call is that it's possible she was expecting it. Bit difficult to say with any certainty, considering she was on the phone with the pranksters for less than five seconds
Yes this had crossed my mind, it's just neither the hospital nor the radio station has divulged if there was any prior arrangement. It does seem unlikely they would cooperate in a prank with a relatively obscure radio station given it's such an elite hospital.

Something continues to remain unclear, why did the first nurse take the prank so hard while the senior nurse who actually blabbed has apparently got out of this unscathed (on appearances).

“We don't have to take it”

Since: Jun 08

WhereTFamI?

#236 Dec 10, 2012
SID wrote:
<quoted text>
Elias you are not making sense, the element of surprise makes a prank a prank. A radio station is hardly going to send a request for a waiver before the program to Jack if they had tapes they intend to air of Bill screwing Jacks girlfriend.
I don't get your example of the overweight person, could a woman sue a newspaper for a photo of her with no make up on.
Exactly, so they supposedly "tried 5 times to get in touch with the hospital and it didn't answer"... a total fabrication as hospitals answer their phones. They only tried once for the prank call and it was answered.

Have you noticed that when TV is doing a story on overweight people and pan over the crowd in a street, they blur out the faces but zoom in on the big bellies and bums? And for other stories some faces are selectively blurred out also.
Elias

Glen Waverley, Australia

#237 Dec 10, 2012
Gottaliv wrote:
<quoted text>
Exactly, so they supposedly "tried 5 times to get in touch with the hospital and it didn't answer"... a total fabrication as hospitals answer their phones. They only tried once for the prank call and it was answered..
Have you worked in a busy city hospital? not a rural hospital with three patients. Even those with a reception often need to be called back. This specific hospital has a nurse on phone duties. For all we know she may well have been taking inquiries from in-patients, talking to hospital staff or backing up a colleague with a patient.
Gottaliv wrote:
<Have you noticed that when TV is doing a story on overweight people and pan over the crowd in a street, they blur out the faces but zoom in on the big bellies and bums? And for other stories some faces are selectively blurred out also.
What has this got to with the price of eggs in China?
Yep

Sydney, Australia

#238 Dec 10, 2012
@ Elias

It's not in their interests for either the hospital or radio station to admit to anything

Investigators would by now have questioned the usual switchboard staff extensively as to WHY they were not on duty when the prank call came through

It's been claimed in the media that the hospital was short-staffed at the time in question and that this is the reason the deceased nurse was on the switch

So investigators would be going through staff rosters with a fine-toothed comb and checking ALL reasons for the alleged short-staff situation

If it's discovered that switchboard staff were given time off, for example -- that will raise immediate red flags. And the person responsible for rostering off the usual switchboard staff will be under suspicion

If it's discovered that one or more of the usual switchboard staff called-in 'sick' on that particular day, then they will be thoroughly investigated to rule in (or out) possible collusion

The hospital is in the hot seat. But so are hospital security and particularly palace security

Not much point having crack-snipers on the hospital roof and having plain clothes palace security sitting in the hospital lobby posing as visitors, if a radio station can slip past them with nothing more than a ludicrously see-through impression of the Queen

So balls were dropped, many of them. What has to be ascertained is those balls were dropped deliberatly, as it seems they may have been

No way in the world should that call have made it past first base. It would not have satisfied for one second a trained switchboard operator employed by a prestigious hospital which caters to elite patients. There would already be protocols carved in stone as far as putting random, outside calls through. Any outside call purporting to be a member of the royal family and/or requesting to speak with or about a royal patient, would have been routed through several channels specifically set-up years ago. The caller's ID etc. would first be traced and identified. The caller would be questioned. Very possibly the caller would be placed on hold in order all the above and more could be processed by security

It's an immense security risk and headache for any of the royals to be in a hospital to begin with. Such a hospital could become a prime terrorist target, after all, resulting in an international state of emergency. To kill or wound a royal would be an enormous terrorist coup. For this and dozens of other reasons therefore, security at that hospital would have been immense, although, as I've said, albeit discreet

It beggars belief that the DJs were able to speak to anyone at that hospital, let alone be transferred to an attending (second) nurse

It could not have taken place without considerable planning on the part of the radio station and, in my opinion, required inside (hospital) knowledge and cooperation

If we can work it out, we can be assured hospital and palace security worked it out two seconds after the prank call first went public

The blaming of the DJs is just a smoke screen to give the public a target for its anger and disbelief
Elias

Glen Waverley, Australia

#239 Dec 10, 2012
Yep wrote:
If it's discovered that switchboard staff were given time off, for example -- that will raise immediate red flags. And the person responsible for rostering off the usual switchboard staff will be under suspicion
I think the hospital did do this, otherwise why would a qualified nurse be sitting at a desk answering the phone? The next question is this. If this is one of the most expensive hospitals in all of the UK then "why" are they skimping out on staff? the longer this case goes the more questiosn it raises. No wonder the hospital is spending more time blaming the DJs than looking into their own affairs.

“We don't have to take it”

Since: Jun 08

WhereTFamI?

#240 Dec 10, 2012
Elias wrote:
<quoted text>
Have you worked in a busy city hospital? not a rural hospital with three patients. Even those with a reception often need to be called back. This specific hospital has a nurse on phone duties. For all we know she may well have been taking inquiries from in-patients, talking to hospital staff or backing up a colleague with a patient.
<quoted text>
What has this got to with the price of eggs in China?
Yes I have Elias, in Sydney and my own town, private and small hospitals as well, and in nursing homes also, anything else you want to know?

Phones are always answered but if there happens to be some very uncommon extreem reason a call is missed on the first try, the second call gets them..... "five times"..... there's no way.

It's actually a very big deal in any hospital for a phone not to be answered... that goes for ambulance and fire brigade as well.

RE: "What has this got to with the price of eggs in China? "

It was to do with public privacy and used as an example, but I was replying to somebody else not you, so no need for you to worry your little head about it.
Yep

Sydney, Australia

#241 Dec 10, 2012
Neither here nor there, but I am of the belief there exists at least one, fully-equipped hospital within royal ground, thus eliminating the need for royals to attend private hospitals

The reason for attendance at private hospitals, in my opinion, is the 'feel good' factor, from which the royals derive public good-will

The Duke was allegedly hospitalised during the recent celebrations. And the media was tipped off as to when visitors would be arriving and departing

It provides the media with photo opportunities but also benefits the royals in addition to assuring the public that the royals are 'just like us, see'

It's a good-will exercise. It allows Prince William to arrive amid flashing camera bulbs and trot up the hospital steps like any young expectant father. It makes the public 'feel good' and the media profits from it also

Millions of women around the world suffer morning sickness and often debilitating chronic morning sickness. But Kate could as easily (and far more securely) have been treated without ever leaving the royal grounds, as the public would realise if they thought about it

The royals are immensely wealthy. They're also prone to the same physical complaints as the rest of us. They have their own water supply, their own communications networks, their own food suppliers. I doubt very much there was any genuine necessity for Kate to attend a private hospital, for I believe the royals have a well-equipped hospital (at least one) within their own estates

There's something very suss about this -- a power struggle maybe between the media and the establishment. And of course there's been unrelenting efforts to discredit the royals since at least the time Murdoch was emplaced by shadowy powers

Perhaps the intent of the prank call fiasco was for the royals to be blamed/held responsible by the public. The royals circumvented this by laughingly brushing off publicly the phone prank

Now, the focus is squarely on the radio station (it produces Big Brother and other junk, doesn't it?) and at least some employed within the hospital itself, in addition to security staff who will be roasted to within an inch of their lives

This was not just 'any' elite private hospital, remember. It was, or should have been, a virtual stronghold while Kate was in residence. That hospital has now lost forever its privileged position as far as royalty and the elite are concerned. It's proven itself a security risk and open to scandal. Whoever's responsible will rue the day
Elias

Glen Waverley, Australia

#242 Dec 10, 2012
Gottaliv wrote:
<quoted text>
Phones are always answered but if there happens to be some very uncommon extreem reason a call is missed on the first try, the second call gets them..... "five times"..... there's no way.
.
Except this hopsital was short staffed. They had the future Queen of England and future heir to the throne probably taking up an entire floor along with her security contingent ( I know this because piddly entertainers such as Kylie Minogue took up an entire maternity ward in Cabrini hospital depriving other sick and pregnant people of beds so that there was a buffer between her and the papparazzi). With all the commotion the King Edward VII Hospital may well have been run off it's feet. I am really not surprised it took 5 rings to contact the hospital.
Yep

Sydney, Australia

#243 Dec 10, 2012
Elias

If there's ANY truth to the 'five rings' claim

could it have been 'five rings' to a particular number which SOMEONE in the know then routed through to the main desk phone AFTER arranging for the deceased nurse to be there ??

If it had been 'five rings' to the official hospital switchboard, there would be records of same. And those records would be in the possession of investigators

BUT if the radio station had arranged beforehand for the DJs to phone a PARTICULAR number (not necessarily that of the main hospital switchboard) and had arranged for that person to route the call through the hospital front desk AFTER getting the nurse TO that desk and after telling her,' The Queen will be calling'---*then* it might explain what came next

So was the nurse killed in order to prevent her from revealing the identity of the individual who -- hypothetically of course -- primed her to expect a call from the Queen and who also arranged for that nurse to be on the spot at that particular time ?

With technologically advanced investigative methods of today, it will all come out eventually

When it does, I hope the punishment reflects the crime, if in fact a murder was committed to hide guilty parties

First on the list of guilty parties of course would have to be the radio heads and those from whom they took instruction

In my opinion, the DJs are as innocent in all of this as were the two nurses involved
Yep

Sydney, Australia

#244 Dec 10, 2012
This fiasco bears the recognisable fingerprints of a Mossad-assisted sting

The israelis almost always stage a war or genocide leading up to and during Christian festivities such as Christmas and Easter, as we are unfortunately aware after years of it

The announcement of a royal baby coinciding with the Christmas period was a morale booster, particularly for maligned and tortured Britain. People needed a boost, hope and reassurance and many were cheered by the royal baby news

How typical that attempts to sabotage all this were swiftly enacted

And the cruel sabotage succeeded via the death (suicide or murder) of a poor woman, a nurse, who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Her death has cast a pall over the royal baby, to say nothing of the grief caused the nurse's immediate and extended family, her colleagues and friends and of course the hospital involved and its staff

Hopefully investigators will unpeel the plot like the layers of an onion, beginning with the radio station and moving inexorably through the layer upon layer of those behind it who were ultimately responsible. Companies owned by other companies owned by others, etc. etc.-- all the way back to source

Then, it's to be hoped (but not expected) that the whore media will expose those ultimately responsible, in the same way it's profited from its unrelenting pursuit of the nurse and DJs, all of whom were innocent victims just trying to earn a day's wage

“We don't have to take it”

Since: Jun 08

WhereTFamI?

#245 Dec 10, 2012
Elias wrote:
<quoted text>
Except this hopsital was short staffed. They had the future Queen of England and future heir to the throne probably taking up an entire floor along with her security contingent ( I know this because piddly entertainers such as Kylie Minogue took up an entire maternity ward in Cabrini hospital depriving other sick and pregnant people of beds so that there was a buffer between her and the papparazzi). With all the commotion the King Edward VII Hospital may well have been run off it's feet. I am really not surprised it took 5 rings to contact the hospital.
It never took "5 rings to contact the hospital" - it took 5 times *trying* to contact the hospital, and the phone was never answered... according to Mike. Rubbish!

And yet, if they were "short staffed and so busy and run off their feet" as you say, the prank call was answered on the very first try.

I watched the DJs interview, it would have been well rehearsed and the main point they wished to get across (or were TOLD to get across) is that "nobody could have predicted this outcome"... they repeated it several times. As if that somehow justifies any bad outcome.

Not once did either of them say they were sorry that they did the prank, or sorry they didn't hang up when they should have. They are NOT "just kids" as somebody called them, they've been adults for years, they're not retarded, and their great delight at pulling off such a massive prank over-road any sense of decency they may have had.

My point is, very little thought was put into any possible outcome at all.

And when they were asked who's idea it was, he blustered something about "we were all sitting around the smoko table discussing it" and never gave a name, Mel said nothing and THAT's when she for real, looked a bit scared/worried.

Mel appeared genuinely upset and worried about the nurse's family, he appeared to me to be a bit petulant. Also there was a controlled anger behind his fašade. They have been made the patsys so far and they know it, but they had choices.
Elias

Glen Waverley, Australia

#246 Dec 10, 2012
Gottaliv wrote:
<quoted text>
It never took "5 rings to contact the hospital" - it took 5 times *trying* to contact the hospital, and the phone was never answered... according to Mike. Rubbish!.
I find it strange the radio station should concoct a story that would be very easy to verify from phone records. I think we can assume they did try 5 times to get through.
Gottaliv wrote:
<They have been made the patsys so far and they know it, but they had choices.
Quite possible. Nobody seems to be owning up to the decision to make the call to King Edward VI Hospital. Likewise the hospital has not explained why a nurse was manning the switchboard.

“Free Speech in a Free World ”

Since: May 10

Australia

#247 Dec 11, 2012
CrimeaRiver wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't think ayone needs to be blamed. The DJs didn't mean to cause death, the producers were just trying to secure ratings (as is their job), the Nurse who answered the phone didn't know she was being pranked and the nurse who gave out medical updates assumed the call had aleady been vetted.
There is no blame to be laid here. If anyone, its the listeners who demand this kind of inane behaviour for their own entertainment.
If this Nurse had not died, the prank would've gone down as one of the all time greatest hoaxes ever pulled.
But nobody is to blame, its just tragic.
I am curious why the nurse feeling upset about this didn't just resign her position and apply for a transfer to another location.
Her anxiety in her position at such a prestigious institution I assume led to her taking of her own life.
Politicians have been known to have done worse things and they resign and move to the back bench until they are forgiven by their peers.
So I can only think that peer pressure led to the death of this lady.

“Free Speech in a Free World ”

Since: May 10

Australia

#248 Dec 11, 2012
Elias wrote:
<quoted text>
I find it strange the radio station should concoct a story that would be very easy to verify from phone records. I think we can assume they did try 5 times to get through.
<quoted text>
Quite possible. Nobody seems to be owning up to the decision to make the call to King Edward VI Hospital. Likewise the hospital has not explained why a nurse was manning the switchboard.
There are a lot of unanswered formats here but the strangest I have seen is the media frenzy both here and overseas demeaning the DJ's and the death of the lady just by doing their thing which is by far worse than the call to the hospital.
It is a contest amongst them to scoop each other like Mum and I found in London at the Ecuadorian Embassy when Julian Assange decided to call it home.
They were there all day and photographers were there all night long spying on any movement in any window of the private apartments within the building just to get their scoop.

Since: Dec 12

Sydney

#249 Dec 11, 2012
Gottaliv wrote:
<quoted text>
Of course you "wish to get into a war of words" with me, this is what your comments are all about - bringing me to task about something I said which you think is contradictory to what I said previously.
I did NOT say the hospital did NOT reprimand her, I stated what they had been saying from the word go... that they DIDN'T reprimand her and had no intentions of doing so. And I can't imagine in my wildest dreams that a false statement would have been made by a high profile hospital such as that, to the press, to be echoed by the media a thousand times, if it could so easily be immediately discounted.
You said you bet they did - I posted what they reported. I never once said they did or didn't.
THEN I said that I find it hard to believe that they didn't... because I was nursing for nearly 40 years and I know only too well how hospitals operate - the blame is always shifted onto the lackeys if they can get away with it.
I don't know first hand what the hospital did or did not do, but am giving it the benefit of the doubt that what they said is the truth, until proved different.
And what I said before is so "relevant" - doesn't matter what the hospital did, doesn't matter what frame of mind she was in - the phone call started all this shit... the blame lies entirely with the radio station, it's code of ethics and it's staff.
Stop giving me grief with petty nit picking - there's plenty of other things I say you could knock your self out with!
"Of course you "wish to get into a war of words" with me"

Wrong. It seems to me that you went out of your way to slam my original comment and accuse me of 'speculation'(everyone commenting on this event is 'speculating') when I suggested that the hospital may have given her some flack.

"the blame lies entirely with the radio station, it's code of ethics and it's staff."

Blame also lies with the feral lowlife British media.
sid

Brisbane, Australia

#250 Dec 11, 2012
Has anyone heard what the nurses cause of death was.

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