Man, 32, who fell to his death while driving airport tram as his friend performed a maintenance check
- Adam Lee, 32, died Friday about 5.35am at Orlando International Airport
- He was ejected through the glass window of the tram before falling 15 feet onto the grassy area below the tracks
- Tram was being operated manually during a routine safety check by two maintenance workers, who let Lee and another friend onboard
- While operating it, Lee removed his hand, causing tram to make emergency stop, airport official said; he was pronounced dead at hospital
- Passengers should not to be on the tram while it is undergoing the routine safety check, only maintenance workers, officials said
Adam Lee was killed while he took control of the tram as a maintenance worker, who was one of his friends, performed a routine daily check.
Lee, a videographer and video editor in Orlando, was one of four people on the tram when the fatal accidental occurred.
He was about to leave for a trip to Colombia, an airport spokeswoman told The Orlando Sentinel.
Killed: Officials said two maintenance men and another passenger were in the tram with Adam Lee, who was operating the tram in maintenance mode at 5 mph when the accident happened about 5:35 am Friday
The controls of three-car tram had been switched from automatic to manual.
One of the two maintenance workers aboard let Lee drive the tram.
At some point his hand moved away from the controls, which activated the emergency brake.
The tram was only moving at about 5 mph but the brake sent Lee through the laminated tempered glass.
Lee was taken to Florida Hospital East, where he was pronounced dead.
Friends described him as a ‘brilliant man’ and avid traveler.
‘He was so smart and so witty, and always had something funny to say in the drop of the hat,’ she said.
‘He’s that all-around just pleasant, happy, up-beat shining soul. He’s such a bright light.
‘There’s no way that this is the end for him. He’s moved on to something better, because people like that just don’t disappear.’
It is unclear whether the maintenance worker who allowed Lee on the tram has been fired.
Orlando International Airport Executive Director Phil Brown said the incident was being investigated, but it was clear the death was accidental.
‘When you take your hand off of it, it’s got a kill switch,’ said Brown.
‘He took his hand off. That’s when it stopped, and he was propelled out of the vehicle.’
Brown said passengers should not to be on the tram while it is undergoing the routine safety check, only maintenance workers from Bombardier Transportation.
The tram, which can only travel up to 27 miles per hour, was making its way from the main terminal to the satellite terminal when the emergency brake was activated mid-way.
Following the accident, the tram was shutdown and another which is being used to transport airport passengers, according to WESH.
Orlando International Airport has eight trams that carry around 100,000 passengers a day and have been in service for 35 years.
Officials said similar incidents involving its trams have not occurred and flights were not impacted by the accident.
The incident is being investigated by the Orlando Police Department and Bombardier will conduct its own investigation, airport spokeswoman Carolyn Fennell told Click Orlando.
The National Transportation Safety Board, the Florida Department of Transportation and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have been contacted regarding the incident
<<Source Mail Online>>