Toddler Tumbles Onto Baggage Conveyor Belt and Takes Wild Ride at Atlanta Airport
The boy's mother said he slipped away while she was printing a boarding pass.
A toddler broke his hand after clambering onto a luggage belt and taking a tumbling trip into the bowels of Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
The 2-year-old's frantic mother said she had been printing out a Spirit Airlines boarding pass when her child, Lorenzo, ran off and bolted behind an unstaffed ticket counter, then flung himself on the moving conveyor belt.
"I just went blank," Edith Vega told reporters. I was like, 'Hey! My son.' I wanted to jump in and try to go get him, but they didn't allow me. I was just freaking out and I'm like, 'Oh, my goodness. I hope he's OK. I hope he's just enjoying the ride.'''
Vega said she had been carrying her son and had just put him down to get her boarding pass from a self-ticketing kiosk when he ran off.
He is recovering at a local hospital from Monday's accident, she said.
Transportation Security Administration workers told Vega her son's ride was lengthy, and full of twists and drops.
"They said it was five minutes," she said. "Yeah, so they said it was like loops and everything."
Security video released by the airport released Wednesday shows Lorenzo, wearing shorts, sandals and a T-shirt, crawling onto the belt, lying down and vanishing under the black strips covering the luggage chute entrance.
Two employees enter the frame of the video just as the toddler slips from view, pointing and trying to see where the child went. Subsequent footage shows Lorenzo heading into a massive X-ray machine, as he tries to escape by climbing over pieces of luggage.
He eventually winds up in a TSA baggage room, where agents come running when they see the little boy, sitting up on the conveyor belt.
The child is picked up and comforted by the screeners wearing blue plastic gloves.
Lorenzo's right hand was fractured, but his mother said she doesn't know how it happened.
"I'm thankful he's alive," she said. "That's all that goes through my mind. I'm just grateful he's here. I just hope he gets better."
An airlines spokesperson said Spirit officials are working with the TSA and airport managers to determine if any regulations were violated.
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