LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating a hot air balloon crash in Clark County. Officials say the balloon went down early Thursday morning in a deserted area not far from Sandy Valley Road (161) about 3.5 miles north of Goodsprings, near Cottonwood Pass. The area is about 40 miles Southwest of Las Vegas.
Metro Search and Rescue responded to an emergency assistance call at 9:25 a.m. When emergency personnel arrived at the scene, they realized several people were involved in a hot air balloon crash. Metro’s Search and Rescue assisted Clark County Fire Department, the BLM, and NHP with their rescue efforts.
Initially, Jeff Buchanan with Clark County Fire Department, confirmed that seven people were injured. However, later in the afternoon, officials told 8 News NOW crews out at the scene that the number of people injured was now at 9.
Some of the passengers on board the hot air balloon described the impact as more of a hard landing rather than a crash and said that four occupants including the pilot were ejected from the basket.
The balloon carried on for about 400 yards and it was when the other occupants were able to get out of the gondola.
Authorities said that one of the passengers, a woman, suffered serious injuries and was airlifted from the scene and taken to University Medical Center where she is said to be stable.
The other 8 occupants had moderate injuries and were taken by ground ambulance to the hospital.
FAA officials say there is still no word on what caused the balloon to go down.