What The Hell Is Going On At Austin's Airport?

What The Hell Is Going On At Austin's Airport?

Photo: Jordan Vonderhaar/Bloomberg

An airport employee was struck and killed by a fuel truck at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport yesterday morning. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has opened an investigation into the fatal incident. This is the second time that a worker has been killed on the tarmac at the Texas state capital’s airport just this year.

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Medics from Austin-Travis County EMS arrived at the scene around 9:30 a.m., according to KVUE. Medical personnel attempted to resuscitate the employee before pronouncing them dead at 10:00 a.m. Not much is known about how the fuel truck hit the ground worker. The Austin Police Department has yet to reveal the victim’s name and job title publicly. Austin City Councilmember Alison Alter released a statement regarding the death:

“Deeply saddened by the news of a City of Austin Government employee who was killed in a fuel storage truck accident on the tarmac at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. My thoughts are with their family and coworkers. All city employees deserve a safe place to work.”

An American Airlines employee was killed after the pushback he was driving crashed into a jet bridge. A corporate investigator for the airline suggested that the incident could have been suicide, according to the Austin American-Stateman. However, those claims were refuted when it became apparent that the vehicle had a lengthy history of mechanical problems.

While there has been a lot of focus over the past year to prevent aircraft near-miss from being serious collisions, there needs to be a concerted effort to protect airport ground workers. They’re the ones working up close with massive multi-ton machines.

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