Four people were killed and one in critical condition after a hot-air balloon collided with a power line Saturday morning in Albuquerque.
A hot air balloon with five people on board collided with a power line six miles west of Albuquerque International Airport, according to the Federal Aviation Administration, which is investigating the accident. The basket of the balloon caught fire after hitting an average busy street.
The accident caused a power outage in the area. According to a tweet from the Albuquerque Police Department. Police spokesman Gilbert Gallegos said the multi-colored balloon was wrapped around the tops of power lines, knocking out power to more than 13,000 homes.
One person was taken to a local hospital in critical condition, New Mexico State Police spokesman Dusty Francisco told USA TODAY. Traffic in the area was closed after the accident. According to a tweet from the police department.
Francisco said the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board have been notified and are investigating the cause of the accident while assisting New Mexico State Police.
Albuquerque is a hot air balloon hub in the United States and hosts a nine-day event in October that attracts hundreds of thousands. Gallegos said that while accidents are uncommon, they can happen.
“Our airship drivers tend to be a lot of experts in navigation, but sometimes we have these kinds of tragic accidents,” he said.
Contributing: The Associated Press