The ABC has been hit with a wave of criticism after their interview with two heroic first responders from Tuesday's horrific bus crash in Melbourne, with the line of questioning branded as "insensitive".
Tradies Cameron Chalmers and Dean Eastway were both driving only a few vehicles behind the bus when it was hit by a truck in Melbourne's west, causing the bus full of 45 children to flip and land on its side.
They immediately rushed to the children's aid, breaking the sunroof and freeing as many school children as they could from the bus, describing the experience as "horrific".
"We just saw the kids screaming and there was smoke and dust," Mr Chalmers told ABC journalist Sarah Ferguson during Wednesday night's episode of 7.30.
"We found kids that were stuck so we jumped in the bus and we just tried to help them ... we realised they were stuck under the bus with their arms."
Despite already providing harrowing insight, Ms Ferguson probed for further detail, asking the sombre faced tradies a string of "prying" questions, such as: "What sort of state were the children in?"
First responders subjected to "intrusive" questions, critics claim
It didn't take long for the interview to cop backlash online, with many questioning why such detailed answers were being chased given the extreme sensitivity of the topic being discussed.
"It was in poor taste to seek details so intrusive and insensitive of the children's trauma. The rescuers, indeed heroes, are likely traumatised themselves," one tweet read.
I’m not enjoying this interview of the rescuers of the bus crash. feels like Sarah Ferguson is digging for dirt. these guys are clearly champions for helping out but seriously ABC do better #abc730
— Sarah Whyte (@whytebate) May 17, 2023
"Your interview of the first responders at yesterday's bus crash was one of the most distasteful, gratuitous and unnecessary interviews I've seen on the ABC. Genuinely appalling," another tweeted, with a third person admitting they couldn't watch the interview.
"Yeah I turned it off, too voyeuristic".
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