Luxor balloon crash kills 19 tourists

People try to escape by jumping out of balloon

A hot-air balloon exploded and crashed this morning just west of Luxor in Egypt, reportedly killing 19 tourists. One tourist and the balloon’s pilot are said to have survived the crash. One witness told the BBC that people tried to escape the burning balloon by jumping out of it, “from about the height of a seven-storey building”.
The balloon was flying at around 300 metres when it is thought to have hit a mobile communications tower or high-pressure electrical cable, caught fire and exploded. Media reports say that the victims include nine tourists from Hong Kong, four from Japan, two from the UK and two from France, with two yet to be identified.
Hot air balloon flights starting at dawn are popular among tourists. But this is not the first such accident. Sixteen people were injured when a balloon crashed in April 2009.
[pictured: Luxor Temple by night]

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