Person dies at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam after falling into KLM aircraft engine

‘Hellish noise’ reported as passengers and crew saw horror unfold

Jane Dalton
Thursday 30 May 2024 04:24
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Person dies at Amsterdam airport after falling into plane engine

A person has been killed after falling into the engine of a KLM aircraft that was about to take off from Schiphol airport in Amsterdam.

Passengers and crew on board reportedly saw the tragedy happen and are being offered counselling.

The plane, which was bound for Billund in Denmark, had been reversing at the time, according to local media.

It was not immediately clear how the person came to fall or whether they jumped, and whether they were a passenger or an employee.

But police and safety authorities have launched a major investigation.

A statement by the airport in Amsterdam read: “Today there was a horrible incident where a person ended up in an airplane engine.

“Our thoughts go out to the relatives and we care for the passengers and colleagues who witnessed this.

“The royal military police [the Marechaussee] are currently conducting an investigation.”

Emergency services rushed to the airport just before 3pm, when the alarm was raised.

A police spokesperson said: “An incident occurred this afternoon on the Schiphol platform where a person fell into a running aircraft engine and died. The Marechaussee starts an investigation.”

It added that all passengers and employees of the flight in question, KL1341, had disembarked and were being taken care of.

The Dutch Safety Board said it was sending three investigators to the airport.

The fact that the engine was running suggested the plane, a Cityhopper, was preparing to take off, according to Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf.

“An employee from the aircraft in question reported that someone had jumped into the engine while the crew had just completed the safety instructions,” its website reported.

“There was ‘a hellish noise’ after which smoke could be seen for a moment. Passengers and employees saw the incident happen before their eyes.”

An airport employee told the website that the aircraft had been reversing before taking off.

KLM said: “A fatal incident took place at Schiphol today during which a person ended up in a running aircraft engine. Sadly, this person has died.

“The flight concerned was KL1341 bound for Billund. We are currently taking care of the passengers and employees who witnessed the incident at Schiphol.

“The circumstances are currently under investigation. For further information – once available – we refer you to the Royal Netherlands Marechaussee [Royal Military Police].”

Police said “victim assistance” was available for passengers, airport employees and emergency services workers.

Passengers may also be important witnesses, the spokesperson added. “They may be able to help us in the investigation.”

It’s understood the person’s remains were found in the aircraft engine.

Mark Harbers, the infrastructure minister, wrote on social media: “Terrible news. My condolences go out to the relatives of the victim and the people who witnessed the accident.”

Marjan Rintel, chief executive of KLM, wrote: “This afternoon a terrible incident took place at Schiphol in which one person died.

“Our thoughts go out to the loved ones of the deceased and all people who witnessed the accident. An investigation into the circumstances is currently under way.”

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