Hot air balloon ride over North Yorkshire leaves passengers injured

One of the passengers sustained a “serious” injury to their neck.

The balloon had taken 14 passengers on a sightseeing flight over the city of York before the sole pilot found a landing field and started his descent.

But with varying wind conditions the pilot soon realised he had not used enough “burns” to reduce his rate of descent, and that the balloon was going to land shot of his target field.

According to an Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) report into the incident which was published this week, the passengers were instructed to adopt a landing position with their heads and back against the padding of the basket before the balloon touched down.

On landing it bounced 20 to 30ft into the air before coming back down to rest in a wide ditch.

No damage was done to the balloon or basket itself although two passengers reported injuries.

The AAIB report said those who were injured possibly “did not maintain their briefed and demonstrated landing position”.

The incident happened in Deighton, North Yorkshire, at 5.30pm on September 13 last year but a report into the blunder was only published this week.

The balloon, which has registration G-ELMR, is owned by company Yorkshire Balloon Flights, and was only constructed in March 2022.

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