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Interpreter Mostly Signed Nonsense During Irma Briefing

17 September 2017

Deaf citizens of Manatee County tuned into the urgent Irma press conference last Friday only to find the amateur interpreter signing gibberish.

"It was obvious to me he wasn't a professional interpreter". AL.com reports interpretation duties fell to county lifeguard Marshall Greene, whose brother is deaf.

A sign language interpreter hired for a Hurricane Irma briefing is being criticized for reportedly signing warnings about "pizza" and "monsters" rather than translating officials' remarks.

County officials say they have learned from the mistake.

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Azzara told the paper that the county has requested an interpreter and public information assistance from the state of Florida.

"It was horribly unnerving for me". She said she was horrified when she saw the broadcast.

"I knew something went horribly wrong", said business owner Charlene McCarthy.

When then-President Obama and other world leaders memorialized Nelson Mandela in 2013, the funeral was overshadowed by an embarrassing scandal: a phony sign language interpreter who was just gesturing at random. "The woman that called said she spoke with the higher-ups and they told her they would cancel and there would be no interpreter at all".

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Commenters on the county's Facebook page also took note, including some who noted that their criticism of the interpreter on September 8 was not a request for the county not to use an interpreter at all.

Instead, she said, members of the county's deaf community were left having to rely on relatives who could hear, or texted friends and family to try to get updates on what was happening as Hurricane Irma struck Florida. "I was totally shocked", Mr Wagner said. His father explained that Marshall was asked by his bosses to help out during the press conference, and that's exactly what he did.

The deaf community is still outraged and wants an apology from Manatee County officials.

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Interpreter Mostly Signed Nonsense During Irma Briefing