Is Fox 32 newsroom a danger zone?

Melody Mendez

Melody Mendez

Forget about a libel attorney. What WFLD-Channel 32 staffers may need is a good personal injury lawyer.

Melody Mendez, news anchor at the Fox-owned station, bailed out of the final hour of “Good Day Chicago” Friday after she tripped and fell over loose cables on the newsroom floor. Co-workers said she seriously injured her wrist.

By the time she returned that night to anchor Fox 32’s 9 p.m. newscast (filling in for Dawn Hasbrouck), Mendez had a large covering on her lower right arm, which appeared to be immobilized. Though concealed behind the anchor desk through most of the show, it was clearly visible during the closing shot with co-anchor Jeff Herndon.

Co-workers said Mendez was the second Fox 32 employee to be injured in the newsroom last week. Producer Melinda Tichelaar required medical treatment Monday after she tripped over an electrical box buried under loose carpet tiles.

Both incidents are believed to be related to an ongoing newsroom rehab project, which has been proceeding at a slow pace.

“The loose carpeting is so bad that [the human resources director] walked through the newsroom last week warning employees not to trip,” one staffer said. “Comical as they didn’t fix the problem. Just warned employees not to trip.”