Balloon crash in Luxor

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Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by chiddy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:11 am

reported on BBC World news - 19 people dead


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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by chiddy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:19 am

one tourist and pilot survived
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Winged Isis » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:25 am

Just got an SMS from home asking if I was safe, so on Aussie news too. Tragic for all. Any word which company?
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Dusak » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:32 am

It didn't mention the company but at nine BBC stated that the pilot and one British tourist had survived. It also stated that most of the dead were British. Sad news.

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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Winged Isis » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:36 am

A fire then an explosion was heard. Flying at 300m. The rest French. La'wallah.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by FABlux » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:41 am

According to NBC:- Of 19 killed in balloon crash 9 are Chinese citizens from Hong Kong, 4 Japanese, 2 British, 2 French and 2 remain unidentified
FCO Travel on Twitter say:- We are aware of reports of a balloon crash in Luxor, Egypt & are making urgent enquiries.

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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by DJKeefy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 7:53 am

Balloon crashes near Luxor killing 19 tourists.

Nineteen tourists, some of them British and French, are reported to have died in a hot air balloon crash near the southern Egyptian city of Luxor.

A fire and an explosion were heard before the balloon plunged onto fields west of Luxor, officials said.

Reporters at the scene said they counted at least eight bodies.

Luxor lies on the banks of the River Nile and is home to some of Egypt's most famous pharaonic-era ruins. It is a popular tourist destination.

A representative of eight firms that operate air balloon flights in Luxor said there had been a gas blast while the balloon was at 1,000 feet (300 metres).

"There were 20 passengers aboard. An explosion happened and 19 passengers died. One tourist and the pilot survived," Ahmed Aboud told Reuters news agency by telephone.

The British foreign office told the BBC it was making urgent enquiries with its colleagues in Egypt to confirm reports of British casualties.

Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-21584413
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by DJKeefy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 8:01 am

"Ezzat Saad, the governor of Luxor, told Nile News that there were three people in hospital, including the Egyptian pilot of the balloon who suffered from 70 percent burns."
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Ruby Slippers » Tue Feb 26, 2013 8:03 am

It was Sky Cruise.

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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Mad Dilys » Tue Feb 26, 2013 8:19 am

Everyone at Hod-Hod Soliman is, of course deeply shocked as our balloon was flying next to the balloon involved when it caught fire. All our passengers are safe, Al Hamdullilah.

Our deepest respect and commiserations to those involved and their families and loved ones.

I was told the company involved, but in view of the high emotions running at the moment I'm loath to mention a name in case a mistake was made in the heat of the moment.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by DJKeefy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:02 am

Foreign newsfeeds are saying:

Some of the dead were killed by jumping balloon, while others were burned by the flames caused the bottle to explode the device about 0600 local time. Because of the fire, the balloon, owned by Sky Cruise, rushed to the ground from about 300 feet high in the Luxor. Egyptian television said rescuers have recovered all the bodies.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by denisegr » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:04 am

Bless them all and their families, tragic news.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by HEPZIBAH » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:10 am

Just heard this tragic news as I came in to work. My heart goes out to all concerned.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Dusak » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:44 am

Hopefully this will not deter the tourist trade from enjoying this exhilarating adventure. This was a tragic accident that could of happened to any balloon anywhere in the world. Its a tragic loss for the friends and families left behind and a tragic loss for Luxor in general.

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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Bullet Magnet » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:49 am

I was woken just now to this news by my Wife.
14 people dead according to the BBC now.. Pilot plus 1 tourist survived.

Cairo Health Ministry give out the figure of 14, plus they say there is a higher survival rate that Luxor Police who say 19 died and one tourist survived.
They say the Pilot was British as well...

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Last edited by Bullet Magnet on Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:34 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by Barb » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:11 am

We heard from Madam Nagwa our friend from the tour guide syndicate that there was a female guide on board. We are trying to find out who she was. Some of the guests were staying at the Steigenberger.

Very sad news. R.I.P :(

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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by DJKeefy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:33 am

Thomas Cook confirms two British customers are among 18 killed in Egypt balloon crash.

Thomas Cook has confirmed that two of its customers died in this morning's hot-air balloon crash in Luxor, and two others are in local hospitals.

The tour operator is sending counselling and support teams to the Egyptian city. It has temporarily suspended sales of hot-air balloon rides in the country while investigations into the cause take place.

Earlier it was reported that one British tourist and two other Britons were believed to have survived after the balloon exploded and crashed in flames in a sugar cane field near Luxor.

There were reports quoting local police as saying that a British male had been killed, while the two survivors were said to be in a critical condition.

Peter Fankhauser, chief executive of Thomas Cook UK, said “The thoughts of everyone in Thomas Cook are with our guests, their family and friends. We’re providing our full support to the family and friends of the deceased at this difficult time.”

Thomas Cook has opened a telephone line for concerned relatives of the company's customers in Luxor: 0800 107 5638.

The Foreign Office, UK travel organisation Abta and holiday companies specialising in Luxor were all trying to get more information about the crash.

Witnesses described hearing a loud explosion before seeing plumes of smoke as the balloon caught fire.

Christopher Michel described the carnage on Twitter, where he posted a series of photographs showing the balloons ahead of the flight.

He said: "It was the balloon behind mine. I heard a loud explosion and saw smoke."

Mr Michel, who previously made a balloon excursion with an English pilot, said the Egyptian operation "didn't feel quite as professional" as that of his first voyage.

The US photographer was taking aerial photographs at the time of the crash.

He told the BBC: "We flew over the ancient ruins. Just before landing in the cornfields, I heard an explosion and saw smoke. I think it was the balloon behind mine.

"I wasn't sure what had happened at first. It was only when we landed we heard the full extent of what happened."

He added: "It's really, really tragic and everyone involved is in a lot of shock."

An AP reporter at the crash site said he saw eight bodies being put into body bags and taken away.

An Abta spokesman said: "We are aware that there have been a number of injuries and fatalities including British nationals following an incident involving a hot air balloon trip in Luxor, Egypt, operated by a local company, Skycruise.

"It is understood that at least 20 people were on board the flight, although it has not yet been confirmed how many of these are British nationals.

"We are working with our members, the Foreign Office and the Egyptian authorities to ascertain more details about the incident. We will issue further information once it becomes available."

Hamdy Shabaan, operations manager at another operator, Sinbad hot air balloons, said the basket was on fire when it fell to the ground.

He said there would be no more flights today as they are restricted to take place between 6 and 8am.

Pictures from the scene showed one casualty in a body bag on the ground in front of an ambulance.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: "We are aware of the reports and we are making urgent inquiries with the authorities in Egypt."

Hot air balloon trips usually take place at sunrise over the Karnak and Luxor temples as well as the Valley of the Kings.

Sixteen people were hurt, including two British women, when a balloon crashed during a tour of Luxor in April 2009.

The balloon was believed to have hit a mobile phone transmission tower near the banks of the Nile.

Former policewoman Linda Lea, 67, from Stoke-on-Trent, still suffers from the multiple injuries she sustained in that crash.

She said today: "I cannot believe this has happened again. They promised to tighten safety procedures after my crash. Flights were stopped for a time.

"These balloons are just too unstable. There is not enough training of staff. There were about 22 or 23 in my balloon when it crashed and maybe there were too many then and too many in today's accident."

Following the 2009 crash, early morning hot air balloon flights over the Valley of the Kings on the West Bank of the Nile were suspended for six months while safety measures were tightened up.

During the break, all 42 pilots from the eight companies who operate flights had extra training.

Other initiatives to improve safety brought in included confining all take-offs to a new balloon "airport" and limiting the maximum number of balloons up at the same time to eight. Previously as many as 50 could share the air space.

Source: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world ... 10814.html
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by HEPZIBAH » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:46 am

New articles are all well and good but I really don't see how the quote from the lady who was sadly badly injured in 2009 can be of any benefit to it at all. From all reports so far, it is clear that these were two very different kinds of incidents and cannot be compared.

Mention is made of the extra pilot training that took place after the 2009 incident and all morning I've been thinking that there is probably a lot of credit due to the other pilots who were flying this morning. It may be speculation on my part but I can't help but think that an incident such as this could have so easily affected other balloons flying close by/below. Thank God that all other balloons came down safely.

I have been privaledged to take a number of balloon flights in Luxor, and would still happily do so again even in the light of today's tragedy. Nevertheless, I can't help but keep thinking 'There but for the grace of God go I!'
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by DJKeefy » Tue Feb 26, 2013 11:55 am

I agree Hepzi, but by watching BBC world news I think they were trying to compare what had changed in the way of safety from the 2009 accident.
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Re: Balloon crash in Luxor

Post by FABlux » Tue Feb 26, 2013 12:07 pm

Inevitably all balloon flights have been suspended. http://english.ahram.org.eg/News/65624.aspx

The death of one of the people hospitalised, a man, has also just been announced & Thomas Cook have posted a phone number for concerned relatives in the UK.

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