Baggage handler killed in belt loader entanglement at New Orleans airport

Published: Aug. 31, 2022 at 1:12 PM EDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE/Gray News) - An airport worker is dead after her hair was caught in a belt loader at the New Orleans airport, officials say.

The 26-year-old, identified by the Jefferson Parish Coroner’s Office as Jermani Thompson, was injured Tuesday at around 10 p.m on the apron, an area where aircraft are parked, loaded, unloaded, refueled, boarded and maintained, the director of communications for Louis Armstrong New Orleans Airport said.

A spokesperson for GAT Airline Ground Support, where Thompson was employed, said she was working to offload a plane that had landed, WVUE reported. They say her hair got tangled in a belt loader.

“We are heartbroken and are supporting her family and her friends as best as we are able. Please send your well wishes to everyone at our New Orleans station during this very difficult time,” the CEO of GAT Airline Ground Support said.

Thompson was taken to a hospital, where she died.

“We extend our deepest condolences following the tragic death of a team member of our ground handling business partner at Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans. Our thoughts are with her family and loved ones during this difficult time,” a spokesperson for Frontier Airlines said in a statement.