Worker Sucked Into Jet Engine Told Not to Go Near It Twice

The NTSB releases a preliminary report on the Dec. 31 accident
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2023 9:40 AM CST
Worker Sucked Into Jet Engine Neglected to Heed Warnings
Passengers wait in Montgomery Regional Airport on Nov. 26, 2014, in Montgomery, Ala.   (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

The American Airlines ground crew worker who died at Montgomery Regional Airport in Alabama when she was "ingested into the engine" of a parked plane had received multiple warnings about getting too close to running engines, the National Transportation Safety Board said in a preliminary report on the Dec. 31 incident. The report stated that prior to the plane's arrival, crew members received two safety briefings—one 10 minutes prior to arrival, one just before it arrived at the gate—during which they were advised that the engines would not be turned off until ground electricity was hooked up to the plane.

As such, they were informed safety cones should not be set and they should steer clear of the craft until the engines were turned off, the turbines came to a stop, and a rotating beacon light went off. But per the report, the employee was seen setting up a safety cone at the plane's rear; two of her fellow ramp agents tried to yell and wave her off, per the NTSB report. But she then walked along the front edge of the left wing, at which point one of the co-workers heard a "bang," reports the Guardian. The rotating beacon light was thought to be on the entire time.

The report did not explicitly state who was at fault in the employee's death, nor did it name the employee, though NBC News reports the Communications Workers of America identified her as Courtney Edwards, 34. A GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $100,000 for her three children. (More accidental death stories.)

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