Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Cameron C-60L, N1603D: Incident occurred June 24, 2018 in Howell, Livingston County, Michigan

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; East Michigan

Balloon went through power lines and crashed.


Date: 24-JUN-18
Time: 13:30:00Z
Regis#: N1603D
Aircraft Model: C 60L
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: MINOR
Activity: OTHER
Flight Phase: EN ROUTE (ENR)
Operation: 91

Two fisherman rescued the pilot of a hot air balloon that hit power lines, caught on fire and crashed in a Livingston County lake at a balloon festival Sunday, according to TV news reports, festival organizers and the Federal Aviation Administration.

No one was hurt during the morning incident at the Michigan Challenge Balloonfest in Howell. The pilot was flying solo, according to a statement from Phil Clinger, competition director for the hot air balloon festival.

The balloon was recovered shortly after the incident, according to Clinger's statement.

Clinger told a Free Press reporter that he was making no further comment early Sunday evening.

No one at Howell police or fire departments could be reached for comment Sunday.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating, spokesperson Lynn Lunsford said in an email to the Free Press.

Lunsford said the Cameron C-60 balloon went through power lines and crashed into a lake, adding that there were no injuries.

The Mason, Mich. man who is listed as the registered owner of the hot air balloon with the FAA could not be immediately reached Sunday. A man with the same name and hometown is listed as the pilot of the balloon, according to a list of the 2018 pilots on the balloonfest's website.

About 40 customers were without power for several hours after the incident, but power has been restored, DTE Energy Spokesman Stephen Tait said.

According to WXYZ-TV, the incident occurred during the festival flyover just after 8 a.m., with the balloon landing in Thompson Lake.

Dave Park said that he was bass fishing when he looked up, saw the flyover and was taking some pictures, according to the WXYZ report.

There was fire and an explosion when the balloon hit the wires, WXYZ reported, adding that sparking wires were dangling and littering the shore with charred balloon pieces.

Park told the television station that the basket and balloon were on fire. He said he brought the pilot to rescue crews onshore, according to the WXYZ report.

Dave Dilworth told WXYZ that he saw the pilot "flailing away yelling and that's when he broke free. He hit the water 20 to 30 yards from the shore."

The three-day festival began Friday and is to wrap up Sunday. The balloons launch in the evening, but a fly-in to the launch site was scheduled from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, according to the balloonfest website.

The festival appeared to continue Sunday based on photos and updates posted on the festival's Twitter feed and Facebook page.

A photo on the balloonfest's Facebook page Sunday morning showed a yellow hot air balloon with red, blue and green on it up in the sky with the post "#balloonfestmi Good morning, Howell!" A person who responded to the post stated that the balloon was the one that hit the power lines.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.freep.com

HOWELL, MI - A man piloting a hot air balloon at the Michigan Challenge Balloonfest Sunday in Howell avoided injury after hitting a power line, catching his balloon on fire and landing in a Livingston County lake.

The man was piloting a Cameron C-60L sometime after 8 a.m. on Sunday, June 24, when he struck a power line, according to a Federal Aviation Administration preliminary crash report.

A video posted on YouTube shows the balloon descending into the pole where it explodes into a cascade of sparks, igniting the balloon.

The balloon then drifts toward nearby Thompson Lake where it crashes into the water about 40 feet from the shore.

A pair of fishermen on a boat saw the balloon descending into lake went to the crash site where they rescued the pilot and brought him to shore, according to a report from WXYZ Channel 7.

The balloon's pilot was the sole occupant when it crashed, according to the Federal Aviation Administration report. He was uninjured in the crash and the damage to the balloon was listed as minor.

Story and video ➤ https://www.mlive.com

No comments:

Post a Comment