2-year-old injured during 5-minute ride on airport conveyor belt

ATLANTA — Channel 2 Action News has confirmed a toddler was hospitalized after he jumped onto a baggage conveyor belt and fell into a TSA bag room at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

The boy's mother told Channel 2 Investigative Reporter Nicole Carr that the incident happened Monday afternoon behind the Spirit Airlines ticket counter.

The mother said she set Lorenzo down for a moment and was printing a boarding pass at a kiosk near the belt. When she looked up, it was too late.

“When I tried to go after him, it was the end of the machine,” Edith Vega said. “He just went a long ride away. I couldn’t even catch up.”

A spokesperson for Spirit Airlines told Channel 2 Action News the unaccompanied boy accessed the belt behind a closed ticket counter that was not staffed.

“I just went blank,” Vega said, recalling the incident. “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.’”

That ride would be full of twists and turns.

Vega said investigators told her it ended five minutes later in the TSA bag room.

According to an Atlanta police report, a TSA officer went to a domestic precinct right before 3 p.m. and notified police the boy had been badly injured.

Vega said his right hand has been fractured, but it’s unclear how it happened.

Multiple agencies are investigating, including the TSA.

In a statement wishing the child the best in recovery, a Spirit Airlines spokesperson said the airline is working with the TSA and Atlanta airport officials to ensure all protocol was followed.

Atlanta Fire and Rescue took Vega and her son to a local hospital following the incident.

Vega said she has not seen the bag room where her son actually ended up at the end of the conveyor belt ride.

“I’m thankful he’s alive,” Vega said. “That’s all that goes through my mind. I’m just grateful he’s here. I just hope he gets better.”