This is the flight status board at the Birmingham Airport that fell on a mother and her four children. Source: Aaron Lee
Airport crews have placed a barrier in front of all other flight status boards in the terminal. Source: WBRC staff
It took seven people to lift the sign back up. Source: Vanessa Araiza/WBRC
Crews began to break down the sign a little before 6 p.m. Source: Vanessa Araiza/WBRC
Birmingham police and fire officials responded to the airport where a 300-plus flight status board fell on top of a family of five, including four children. Source: Melanie Posey
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -
A ten-year-old boy was killed and four other people were injured when a 300-plus pound flight status board fell at the Birmingham airport Friday afternoon.
A mother her four children were trapped underneath the heavy board when it fell around 1:30 p.m. Friday.
Witnesses reported hearing a loud crash in the new terminal of the airport and people screaming as they scrambled to help the family trapped by the massive sign.
It took between eight to ten airport employees to lift it off of them, Birmingham Fire and Rescue Battalion Chief Donald Jones said.
The injured children were transported to Children's of Alabama hospital for treatment and the mother was taken to an area hospital.
A spokesperson for Children's identified the child who died as Luke Bresette, age 10. He passed away at 2:26 p.m. at Children's of Alabama hospital.
There is no update on the conditions of Bresette's three other injured siblings. A UAB spokesperson says that the mother is in critical condition.
The flight status board, estimated to weigh between 300 and 400 pounds by a fire official, was in a pre-security section of the new terminal, which opened last week. The board was near the Southwest Airlines ticket counter.
The board that fell is currently laying down, surrounded by a barricade, near the wall where it was mounted.
Airport officials are checking all of the other flight information signs to make sure they are secure. The workers have also placed barricades around all of the flight signs to keep passengers from getting too close to them.
A spokesperson for the airport, Toni Herrera-Bast, said airport officials don't know why the board fell, but they will investigate the matter.
Herrera-Bast said the airport was never closed to the public during the incident and all flights are still going on as normal.
Birmingham's Mayor William Bell released a statement about the incident, saying he has offered the city's "full support to the Airport Authority as they investigate what has occurred this afternoon."
Mayor Bell said he has asked the public safety staff to "assist this family in their time of need in any way possible as they grapple with what has happened."
FOX6 News reporters at the airport say that around 6 p.m. Friday, crews could be seen dismantling and removing the board that fell and injured the family.