BY Michael Austin, The Western JournalJanuary 26, 2023
1 year ago

Alabama Airline Worker and Mom of 3 Sucked Into Plane Engine Was Warned to Stay Back: NTSB

A newly released report sheds some light on the brutal New Year's Eve killing of a ground crew worker at Alabama's Montgomery Regional Airport (MGM).

The report details a review conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

The incident began when one recently landed plane ran a required two-minute engine cool-down.

As ground workers began to approach, the flight's first officer opened a cockpit window and gave the workers a verbal warning, according to the report.

Emergency lights and a "crew alerting system" were also in operation.

Nevertheless, one worker walked in front of an engine, was "pulled off her feet and into the operating engine" and suffered fatal injuries.

The ground crew worker -- later identified as Courtney Edwards, 34, according to Fox News -- was a mother of three.


Edwards was given multiple warnings that the engines would remain on during the cool-down period in addition to the pilot's verbal warning and the safety lights.

According to the NTSB review, the MGM ground crew held multiple safety meetings in advance of the plane's landing.

During these meetings, it was emphasized that the engines would be running, and therefore unsafe, during the engine cool-down period, which was set to last until the plane connected to ground power.

As Edwards approached the plane to set up cones and perform her duties, multiple crew members attempted to wave her off.

The NTSB review noted that The American Eagle Ground Operations Manual clearly warns ground crew operators not to approach an aircraft while the engines are on and the rotating beacon (one of the warning lights ignored or unseen by Edwards) is flashing.

On the day of the incident, MGM put out an official statement.

"We are saddened to hear about the tragic loss of a team member of the AA/Piedmont Airlines," the Executive Director of MGM Wade A. Davis said.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family during this difficult time.”

After the incident occurred at 3 p.m., operations at MGM were put on hold despite New Year's Eve being one of the busiest days of the year for air travel.

Operations resumed five and a half hours later at 8:30 p.m.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: Michael Austin, The Western Journal

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