Investigators are trying to determine how an experienced maintenance worker died while performing a task that others described as “a very routine procedure.”
Aircraft engineer Miles Hunter, 51 was killed after he was sucked into a jet engine at Woodbourne Airbase near Blenheim, New Zealand.
Hunter worked for Safe Air, a subsidiary of Air New Zealand that runs a maintenance service for the New Zealand military.
Air NZ said Hunter was sucked into the engine for a Lockheed C-130 Hercules that was sitting on a stand without propellers attached.
Reports say Hunter was performing a routine procedure for engines after they’re repaired. He’d worked for the company for five years.
A source with New Zealand’s Occupational Safety and Health agency said the engine was taken into a hangar to be dismantled and to allow the man’s remains to be recovered.
This death is a first for Air NZ, but similar incidents have happened elsewhere. A U.S. navy serviceman survived after being sucked into a jet engine on an aircraft carrier in 1991.