Tuesday, December 20, 2005


I was reminded today of something the members of my profession (myself included) are too often guilty of. This story about two passengers on the Southwest plane that slid off the runway at Midway who are suing everyone except the dead kid contains the language "the Boeing 737-700 aircraft plunged through a fence-like barrier and onto a busy street." Oh boy.

The picture below, which is a Chicago Tribune picture, clearly shows a . . . fence. Not a "fence-like barrier."

Merriam-Webster says a "fence" is "a barrier intended to prevent escape or intrusion or to mark a boundary; especially : such a barrier made of posts and wire or boards." Insofar as this "barrier" prevented intrusion and marked the boundry of the airport I think the reporter who wrote the story could have safely called it a "fence."


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