A man at the Salt Lake City airport caused a disturbance at a retail shop, ran through a security door onto the airfield, found a plane in the deicing pad, and crawled into the engine, where he ultimately perished.
A tragic incident occurred on January 1st at the Salt Lake City airport. A 30-year-old man died after climbing into an engine of a plane that was sitting at a deicing pad.
“The individual ran to the south end of the airport’s west runway where deicing operations were underway and crawled into an aircraft engine that was not running,” according to a statement from Nancy Volmer, Salt Lake City International Airport’s communications director. “The plane was en route from SLC to (San Francisco).”
While the engines were not running, the Delta flight had already boarded its passengers and was set to take off after deicing.
Officials conducted a search for the man and eventually found him unconscious inside the engine cowling.
“SLCPD officers, Airport Operations, and the Salt Lake City Fire Department performed lifesaving efforts, but the man died on the scene,” according to the police statement.
It’s unclear why the man climbed into the engine or what ultimately killed him.
The flight on a twin-engine Airbus A220-100 was canceled after the incident, and all passengers were put on other flights.
An investigation is ongoing to determine why the passenger was able to access a restricted area without detection and why the emergency exit door alarm didn’t prevent him from accessing the runway.