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Indiana hot air balloon strikes live power lines, leaves three injured

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Image taken from Google.com

Indiana hot air balloon strikes live power lines, leaves three injured

The pilot and two passengers in a hot air balloon accident that happened over the weekend in northwest Indiana were seriously hurt while attempting to fly across electrical lines; the balloon struck the lines before crashing to the earth, according to statements made by local officials on Tuesday.

The Lindstrand hot air balloon "crashed after striking power lines," according to a statement from the FAA. According to the FAA report on the event, on Sunday evening, the balloon fell into power wires in Hebron City, Indiana, which is located 56 miles or 90 km southeast of Chicago.

A brilliant glow can be seen in the hot air balloon film that has gone viral as it passes over the wires. The Lowell Fire Department stated that the balloon finally burst at approximately 7 p.m. in a field approximately 13 miles (21 kilometers) southeast of Hebron. Rescue workers arrived on the scene and discovered the pilot and injured passengers inside the balloon's basket. The fired department stated on social media, "There was evidence on the passenger basket that electrical current passed from the power lines to the basket and injured the three people in the basket."

The pilot was flown to a nearby hospital in Crown Point, Indiana, and the two passengers were transferred to hospitals in Chicago "due to the severe extent of the burn injuries." verified that the investigation into the event is being led by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

The hot air balloon was retrieved for "further examination," according to the NTSB. The NTSB added, "The NTSB does not determine or speculate about the cause of the accident during the on-scene phase of the investigative process."

Because of the nature of balloon operations and landing locations, Patrick Cannon, president of the Balloon Federation of America, stressed that balloon pilots are well-versed in the risks associated with power lines. Pilots undergo extensive training, and they are allowed to fly as low as 500 feet (152 meters) as long as they keep a safe distance of at least 500 feet from people, structures, animals, and other obstacles.