Defective bracket found on collapsed jet bridge at airport

Photo: AP

Investigators found a defective metal bracket on the jet bridge that collapsed and injured six people at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, officials said Sunday.

Metal brackets will be replaced on the jet bridge that collapsed Saturday and on five other jet bridges made by the same manufacturer, the Maryland Department of Transportation said in a statement.

The department said 33 jet bridges made by the manufacturer were inspected and deemed safe to use.

The rest of the airport’s jet bridges also will be inspected.

All six people injured in the collapse were released from the hospital early Sunday, the department said.

Southwest Airlines said the jet bridge failed while paramedics were helping a passenger with a medical problem off Flight 822 after it arrived from Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

Southwest said the jet bridge, which connects the plane to the terminal, failed while medics were helping the passenger outside the aircraft.

Remaining passengers safely exited the plane using air stairs, the airline said.

The state transportation department said airport operations will not be affected by the work on the six jet bridges that will be taken out of service so the brackets can be replaced.

“Our passengers’ safety is the top priority and BWI Marshall Airport has moved quickly to address this issue,” state Transportation Secretary Pete Rahn said in a statement.

6 injured due to jet bridge ‘equipment failure’ at airport

Officials say six people have been injured after a “partial equipment failure” involving a jet bridge at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport.

The airport tweeted that six people were taken to a hospital Saturday night with non-life-threatening injuries due to the incident at Gate E-10.

In a statement, Southwest Airlines said Flight 822 had just arrived from Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and requested paramedics to help with a medical situation involving a passenger.

Southwest says the airport’s jet bridge, which connects the plane to the terminal, failed while medics were helping the passenger outside the aircraft. Southwest says remaining passengers safely exited the plane using air stairs.

The airport says the plane has been moved and there have been no further impacts to airport operations. An investigation is ongoing.

News outlets report that the Augusta County Sheriff's Office charged 39-year-old Betty G. Hemp, of Middlebrook, with six counts of felony animal cruelty and six misdemeanor charges of illegal dumping.

The sheriff's office said Hemp was freed on $2,500 bond after her arrest Thursday.

The bodies of the puppies Hemp is accused of killing were found Dec. 22.

Investigators believe the dogs were between four to six months old.

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