Bob Woodruff injured by improvised explosive device in Iraq

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Bob Woodruff with fellow World News Tonight co-anchor Elizabeth Vargas

ABC News anchorman Bob Woodruff and his camera operator Doug Vogt have been seriously injured in an explosion. Early reports indicate that both men sustained head injuries in the blast.

Woodruff was evacuated to the Balad Airbase, 68 kilometers north of Baghdad and is currently undergoing surgery. "Bob and Doug are in serious condition and are being treated at a U.S. military hospital in Iraq," ABC said in a statement.

Reports say Woodruff was taping a report inside an Iraqi mechanized military vehicle near Taji, Iraq when the vehicle ran over and detonated an improvised explosive device. ABC also reports that exchanges of small arms fire took place shortly after the explosion. MSNBC reports that Woodruff and Vogt were wearing body armor and helmets when the explosion occurred, measures that may turn out to have saved their lives. The Associated Press is reporting that the two men were standing in the hatch of the vehicle at the time of the explosion, and that no other people were injured.

Woodruff and Vogt had been embedded with the 4th Infantry Division that was accompanying an Iraqi Army unit.

ABC also said that both Woodruff and Vogt were wearing body armor and helmets.

The U.S. military headquarters in Baghdad has confirmed the attack took place. However, no further information has been made available.

Vogt, a 46-year-old Canadian based in France, is an Emmy-award winning cameraman for ABC News with 25 years of experience.

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 61 journalists have been killed in the line of duty in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

Woodruff became the permanent co-anchor of ABC's World News Tonight, with Elizabeth Vargas on January 3, 2006, replacing the late Peter Jennings.