Five People Pass Away After A Hot Air Balloon Crashes Into Some Power Lines
This is just heartbreaking…
On Saturday morning, a hot-air balloon ride in Albuquerque, New Mexico quickly turned into a deadly nightmare after crashing into some power lines and catching on fire. Eyewitness Joshua Perez reportedly heard “a loud bang” while at a nearby gym with his girlfriend, and they soon saw the balloon falling apart when it hit the power line. He and other people immediately rushed to the crash site with fire extinguishers, but Perez told KOB:
“You could just see them on the ground. No one was moving.”
Sadly, four of the victims were declared dead at the scene. A fifth individual was taken to the hospital in “critical and unstable condition” but later passed away due to his injuries. The Albuquerque police tweeted out earlier in the day:
“Unfortunately, 4 individuals died as a result of their wounds from the hot air balloon crash. One additional individual was transported to a local hospital and is currently in a critical and unstable condition. … The male adult who was transported to the hospital succumbed to his wounds. Our prayers go out to the friends and family of all five people who tragically lost their lives.”
According to NBC News, authorities revealed that three of the people were men and two were women. And while their names have not been released, the publication reported that the Albuquerque Fire Rescue officials confirmed that “one of the deceased male patients was the pilot of the balloon.” Their ages also ranged between 40 and 60 years old.
An onlooker had captured the tragedy on video, which shows the balloon itself plummeting down to the ground without the gondola holding the victims. Warning: Potentially Triggering Content.
It is not yet known how the tragic accident happened, but the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are reportedly leading the investigation. The crash also resulted in a power outage affecting more than 13,000 households in the area for several hours, NBC News reported.
In case you didn’t know, hot air balloon rides have become a popular tourist attraction for the largest city in New Mexico. The city, which was dubbed the “hot air ballooning capital of the world,” even hosts a week-long Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta every October. Police spokesperson Gilbert Gallegos told USA Today:
“Our balloonists tend to be very much experts at navigating, but sometimes we have these types of tragic accidents.”
Truly a devastating accident. Our hearts go out to the victims and their families.
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