Airport baggage handler dies in freak accident after her hair got caught in belt loader

Francis Akhalbey September 02, 2022
Jermani Thompson died in a freak accident at the New Orleans airport -- Photo via FOX 18

A baggage handler at the New Orleans airport tragically lost her life after her hair got caught in a belt loader while she was unloading baggage from a plane that had touched down. 

According to FOX 8, the Director of Communications for Louis Armstrong New Orleans Airport said the August 30 incident occurred while Jermani Thompson was at the airport apron. That section of the airport is where aircraft are parked, loaded, unloaded, refueled, boarded, and maintained. The incident happened around 10 pm.

Thompson was a GAT Airline Ground Support employee. A spokesperson for the company said the 26-year-old woman’s hair got entangled in the belt loader while she was working.

“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 succumbed to her injuries at a hospital. “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 Frontier Airlines spokesperson said.

Thompson’s mother, in an interview with WRAL, said her daughter was a basketball enthusiast. “She was a basketball guru, she loved basketball, that was her thing,” Angela Dorsey shared.

Dorsey also shared details on the circumstances surrounding her daughter’s death. “The doctor said that her hair got stuck in the conveyer and they tried, they say they tried to cut her hair but they couldn’t,” she said. “She died on her way to the hospital.”

A coworker who witnessed the tragic incident also recalled what happened. “We’re sitting there and we see her hair … I can’t get that image out of my head,” he said. “People just can’t stop crying about it, we worked long hours with her every day — it just doesn’t seem real.”

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: September 2, 2022


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