Two dead, one missing in hot air balloon disaster

A hot air balloon on fire is pictured north of Richmond, Virginia, May 9, 2014, in this handout photo courtesy of Lynn Shultz. Credit: Reuters
A hot air balloon on fire is pictured north of Richmond, Virginia, May 9, 2014, in this handout photo courtesy of Lynn Shultz.
Credit: Reuters

Two people were killed and another missing after a hot air balloon hit a power line and caught fire over Virginia during a festival, police said on Saturday.

Authorities have not identified the victims and were conducting a search in the air and with more than 100 people on the ground for the third person who was in the balloon’s basket at the time of the Friday evening accident about 30 miles north of Richmond.

“We still have not located the basket or the balloon. We do continue to keep finding debris and various items that would have been on the hot air balloon,” Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller told a televised news conference.

She said there were eyewitness reports that two people were seen tumbling from the basket after the balloon caught fire, but said it was unclear if they fell or jumped.

Two other balloons had landed safely at a designated landing site before the accident with the third balloon, Geller said.

The Washington Post reported two women’s basketball officials at the University of Richmond were among the three people killed in the incident.

They were associate head coach Ginny Doyle, 44, and Natalie Lewis, the director of basketball operations, the newspaper reported, citing a sister of Doyle and a person who had family members at the balloon festival.

A representative from the University of Richmond did not return calls.

Witnesses posted photos online showing a balloon in mid-air with its basket engulfed in flames and a trail of smoke spilling into the sky.

Many said there was an explosion as it hit the line and the balloon then separated from the basket carrying the passengers. People on the ground could hear screams from those in the balloon, witnesses said.

“They were just screaming for anybody to help them,” resident Carrie Hager-Bradley told a local NBC affiliate.

More than 20 hot air balloon teams from across the United States were to take part at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County. The Saturday and Sunday events were canceled.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board were investigating the accident.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

At 91, Marvel creator Stan Lee continues to…

By Piya Sinha-RoyLOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Marvel Entertainment's chief emeritus Stan Lee may be in his ninth decade, but it hasn't stopped him from adding…

National

Islamic State says beheads U.S. journalist, holds another

Islamic State insurgents released a video purportedly showing the beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley, who had gone missing in Syria nearly two years ago.

Local

VIDEO: NYPD seeks shooter in East New York…

Cops are on the lookout for an unknown shooter who aimed and missed hitting a man on a bicycle, instead nearly striking a nearby officer in East New York.

Local

NYS state forces thrift shops comply with ban…

Nine New York City thrift shops were reprimanded by the state attorney general for selling children's clothes with drawstrings around the neck and waist.

Movies

At 91, Marvel creator Stan Lee continues to…

Marvel Entertainment's Stan Lee is adding outposts to his creative empire to interest a new generation of children in super heroes of all shapes and sizes.

Television

Mira Sorvino explores immortality on 'Intruders'

Mira Sorvino's new show "Intruders" centers around a secret society that achieves immortality by taking over the bodies of other people.

Television

5 things you need to know about new…

"Doctor Who" returns Saturday with a new star, Peter Capaldi. Here's some things to know about him (mainly his turn as sweary spin doctor Malcolm Tucker).

Movies

Interview: Elisabeth Moss on not talking about the…

Elisabeth Moss talks about how it's best if you don't know the opening twist in "The One I Love" and giving up Peggy Olson after nine years of "Mad Men."

MLB

Shane Greene travels unlikely road to Yankees stardom

Shane Greene was throwing a bullpen session on a quiet field at Daytona Beach Community College one day when the ball started moving.

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL tight ends (TE)

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: Angels supplant A's, Nationals climb

MLB Power Rankings: Angels supplant A's, Nationals climb

NFL

David Wilson returns to triple jump, sets sights…

Giants fans know David Wilson can jump. They are just more used to seeing him go for backflips, not distance.

Style

11 timeless gifts for registries or just because

Gifts to prove you're a style maven once and for all.

Parenting

How everyday moments can inspire kids' creativity

"The Artist's Way for Parents" author Julia Cameron gives advice on how parents and children can be creative together.

Tech

How to stay safe online

Stop worrying about keeping your online passwords safe, and start worrying about keeping your username a secret. Actually, worry about both. According to Shaun Murphy…

Tech

OpenTable now lets you pay your bill via…

The restaurant app OpenTable added the ability to pay your bill (and tip) with your phone, thus cutting back on a few dining annoyances.