Ground handler killed in conveyor belt accident at New Orleans airport

Kate Scott /

An airport baggage handler for Frontier Airlines at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY) has been killed after her hair became caught in a conveyor belt.

Local news CBS42 reports that the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office (JPSO) confirmed that a 26-year old Frontier Airlines employee, identified as Jermani Thompson, was unloading luggage from a parked aircraft when the accident occurred on August 30, 2022 at around 22:30 local time.

A JPSO spokesman said the employee was taken to a Kenner hospital to be treated but died shortly after. 

An airport spokesperson confirmed to New Orleans media outlet NOLA that Thompson was an employee of GAT Airline Ground Support. Mike Hough, GAT’s chief executive officer, told NOLA that Thompson’s hair became entangled in the machinery of the belt loader. 

Jermane Thompson, photo from: Louisiana Hot Topics Facebook page

“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,” Frontier Airlines said in a statement.

Kevin Dolliole, Director of Aviation for Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, also released a statement, which was seen by US media, regarding the tragic incident. “We are deeply saddened about the tragic loss of GAT Airline Ground Support team member, Jermani Thompson. The Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport extends its sincere condolences to her family and friends, and also to our partners at GAT and Frontier Airlines. Jermani was a part of our Airport family, and we will continue to support one another in any way we can during this trying time.”


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