A worker coils up the cord for a flight deck...

A worker coils up the cord for a flight deck communications headset as a United Airlines Boeing 737 Max airplane prepares to take off, Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019, at Renton Municipal Airport in Renton, Wash. Federal safety regulators are warning airlines to make sure that workers stay away from jet engines that are still running. The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday that the alert follows “multiple" incidents of workers being hurt or killed during ground operations. Credit: AP/Ted S. Warren

WASHINGTON — Federal safety regulators are citing recent incidents, at least one of them fatal, in warning airlines to make sure that workers keep their distance from jet engines until they are powered off.

The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday it issued a safety alert to prevent workers from being injured while towing planes or guiding them to and from terminal gates.

The FAA said airlines should review their safety programs to make sure they follow practices including keeping workers clear of planes until they are stopped and chocks are placed under the wheels.

The warning was prompted by “multiple events” in which workers were injured or killed during ground operations at airports.

The FAA bulletin cited two incidents, including the death of a ramp worker who was pulled into an engine of an American Eagle plane parked at a gate at the airport in Montgomery, Alabama. The Labor Department has proposed $15,625 in penalties against the worker’s employer, Piedmont Airlines, a subsidiary of American Airlines. Piedmont is contesting the fine.

In the other incident, a worker removing landing gear safety pins was struck by a wing when a tow driver moved the plane. The worker was run over by the plane’s wheels.

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