A picturesque marriage proposal in a hot air balloon Wednesday evening turned out to be a truly shocking experience when the balloon crashed into power lines shortly after the bride-to-be said yes.
Pilot Dallas Beall and the woman were treated for burns in Sellersburg, Ind., around 8 p.m. on Wednesday night. Major Chuck Adams with the Clark County, Ind., sheriff’s office said after the man proposed, Beall tried to land the balloon on a patch of ground overgrown with tall grass in Sellersburg. The woman said yes, but Beall struggled to successfully land the bright yellow balloon.
Beall boosted the balloon to try and land elsewhere, but the basket brushed against high-tension power lines, giving the pilot an electric shock and knocking him unconscious, according to reports from NBC affiliate WAVE in Louisville, Ky. The shock caused him to fall into the bride-to-be, giving her a shock as well. The groom-to-be performed CPR on the pilot, reportedly reviving him, until medics arrived.
The newly engaged couple was not identified to the public. They were treated for burns at the scene, and the pilot and future bride were transported to local hospitals. Their injuries were not life-threatening, according to local media sources.
Tony Saxton, a pilot at Endless Mountains Hot Air Balloon, Inc. in Nicholson, Pa., said sometimes accidents like this are unavoidable.
“Wind conditions can change at a moment’s notice without warning, and that’s oftentimes when power-line accidents occur,” Saxton told msnbc.com. “I always teach my students to fly over them and land on the other side, if at all possible.”
Saxton, who trains people to fly balloons in northeastern Pennsylvania, said if a power line strike is imminent, he trains pilots to deflate the hot air balloon by “ripping out” the top panel, done by pulling a ripcord because “it’s safer to have a basket as close to the ground as possible so people can just jump out.”
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