Hot Air Balloon Hits Power Lines in Indianola

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WARREN COUNTY, Iowa — No one was injured when a hot air balloon got hung up on power lines in Warren County Tuesday night.

The report of a balloon caught on power lines about a half mile from the National Balloon Classic field in Indianola came in a little before 8:00 p.m.

Two people were in the basket of the balloon and neither were injured.

Witnesses say pilot Jim Thompson tried to steer the basket away from power lines. The balloon started deflating, sending it over the wires, which sparked.

“He was dropping down, then heading towards the field, and then all of a sudden he started coming down, basically just all straight down, he started to turn the burners on, but it didn't slow him down at all,” witness Monty Beard said. “Then when he hit the ground, he just collapsed.”

Thompson and his passenger knew it was dangerous to get out on their own.

“Jim waited in the basket until he knew it was safe to exit, then they exited, they pulled the balloon off the wires with no damage they packed it up and everything is fine,” explained event director Bill Clemons.

We're told Thompson is an experienced pilot.

It will not have an impact on any of the events going on Wednesday and through the rest of the week.



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