The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) has levied a fine against a subsidiary of American Airlines just $15,625 over the death of a woman who was sucked into the engine of the airline’s plane.
American Airlines has been fined $15,000 after an airport worker was sucked into the plane’s engine and died. pic.twitter.com/L4gDtNcvYU
— Daily Loud (@DailyLoud) June 19, 2023
According to OANN, Courtney Edwards, 34, got sucked into a plane’s engine on New Year’s Eve. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) conducted an investigation that revealed that Edwards —a mother of three— was walking on the ramp at Montgomery Regional Airport, where American Airlines Flight 3408 was parked when she was ingested into the plane.
A regional subsidiary of American Airlines is facing a $15,000 fine after an airline worker was violently 'ingested' by the engine of a landed plane.
The airline worker, Courtney Edwards, is survived by her three children and her mother. A GoFundMe page has been set up and has… pic.twitter.com/V97VjhowBA
— Techno Hulk (@Technohulk22) June 20, 2023
The NTSB found that Piedmont Airlines, an American Airlines subsidiary, held two safety briefings with the ground crew just 10 minutes before the plane arrived at the gate. During the briefing, employees were warned not to approach the plane until the engine and beacon light were turned off.
Just as the plane’s engine was starting to shut down, the pilot received an alert that someone was opening the front cargo door. Surveillance footage would later show Edwards walking toward the back of the plane while holding an orange safety cone. Seconds later, Edwards suddenly disappears from view.
The plane’s co-pilot reported that the airplane shook violently before it automatically shut down.
OSHA levied a fine of $15,625 on Piedmont Airlines after investigations revealed that it was found it was responsible for a safety breach that led to Edwards’ death.
The Communication Workers of America, Edwards’ union, said OSHA blamed the airline for a lack of effective training, clear and unambiguous communication on the ramp and clear instructions from supervisors regarding when it is safe to approach an aircraft.
American Airlines released a statement shortly after the New Year’s Eve incident saying that it’s focussing on ensuring everyone affected by the accident gets the support they need.
“We are devastated by the accident involving a team member of Piedmont Airlines, an American Airlines regional carrier, at Montgomery Regional Airport (MGM),” the statement read. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and our local team members.”
A GoFundMe launched to help Edward’s three children has raised over $114,000 as of Friday.