EL PASO, Texas, Jan. 17 (UPI) -- A federal investigation has begun into how an aircraft mechanic was sucked into an engine of a Continental Airlines jet at El Paso International Airport.
"It was a Boeing 737 and it was doing an engine run up for a maintenance problem and a person was sucked into the engine," said Roland Herwig, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration in Oklahoma City.
The incident happened around 9 a.m. Monday, and by evening, the mechanic's name had not been released until family could be notified, the El Paso Times said Tuesday.
"Continental is coordinating assistance for passengers who need help dealing with this tragedy," said Continental Airlines Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Larry Kellner in a statement. "Continental's Employee Assistance Program team is also flying to El Paso to meet with employees."
The plane, which carried 114 passengers and five crew members, was at the gate boarding passengers for a flight to Houston when the incident occurred.