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29th Jun 2023

Woman loses leg after getting caught in moving walkway at airport

Steve Hopkins

Travellers rushed to turn off the emergency switch as the victim was pulled into the mechanism

A tourist has had her leg amputated after getting it caught in a travelator at an airport.

The 57-year-old woman was due to board a flight from Bangkok’s Don Mueang Airport to the southern Nakhon Si Thammarat province on Thursday when the freak accident happened.

The Thai woman, according to a report in the Bangkok Post, tripped over her suitcase before her left leg was dragged into the mechanism in the airport’s South Corridor between Gate 4 and 5, of the second domestic terminal, at 8.27am.

Airport general manager Karant Thanakuljeerapat told a press conference that airport medical staff were able to stabilise the woman – who has not been named – before she was rushed to Bhumibol Adulyadej Hospital in the Sai Mai district.

Reports suggest the medical team had to cut her left leg off above the knee.

MailOnline reports that horrified passerby fumbled to turn off the emergency switch as the machine continued to pull the woman inside.

The publication reports that the medical team at the hospital said the woman was initially sent to Karun where she was told that they could not reattach her leg. She then requested to be transferred to another hospital to assess the possibility.

The Post reported that, immediately after the incident. Airport management closed the walkway and ordered an investigation. An apology was also issued to the woman’s family who was assured the woman would be compensated.

Karant told the Post the moving walkways are checked daily and that it was found to be ready for operation before being activated Thursday.

In a statement, the Don Mueang Airport said: “The director of Don Mueang Airport and management has visited the patient to follow up on the treatment and received information from the medical team at Bhumibol Hospital that she is currently in the process of receiving treatment from the medical team.

“Don Mueang Airport is deeply saddened by the incident and ready to fully accept the responsibility as well as take care of the medical expenses and compensation.”

The incident comes just days after an airport worker was killed after being sucked into an engine on the tarmac of San Antonio International Airport.

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