Man Dangling From Hot Air Balloon Falls to Death in Freak Accident Captured on Video

by Courtney Blackann
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It’s the kind of accident that should never happen. When it does, it’s a sad day for everyone involved. A young Israeli man has died after dangling from a hot air balloon and subsequently falling 300 feet Tuesday, officials said. The harrowing event was captured on video. In it, it shows Yogev Cohen, 28, desperately clinging to the side of the aircraft’s basket as it rises.

The young man was apparently a groundskeeper who had been working on the balloon shortly before the accident.

“Apparently he is a ground crew member who was supposed to be on the ground and not in the air,” police officer Slava Bonchuk told Ynet of the tragedy, which happened near Afula, the Times of Israel reported via the New York Post.

Unclear Why Groundskeeper Was Hanging On as Balloon Rose

Though Cohen was working on the balloon prior to the accident, officials aren’t sure why the man continued to hang on to its side as it rose through the air. However, by the time the balloon’s pilots noticed Cohen, their altitude was too high to reverse course, officials said.

Despite his best efforts, Cohen is unable to hold on to the side and falls to his death (which is not a part of the video recording). Paramedics that arrived at the scene saw a mangled Cohen who was without a pulse. After his fall, he landed on a moving car. Luckily, no one inside the car was injured.

“He was not breathing and without a pulse,” medics at the scene said. Cohen was declared dead after authorities arrived and found him in the middle of the road.

Nearby, the hot air balloon pilot was able to safely land the aircraft shortly after Cohen’s demise. An investigation is ongoing into the freak accident as officials from the Civil Aviation Authority are conducting interviews.

”We started collecting testimonies from the pilot. the vehicle passengers, eyewitnesses, and people who were in the balloon basket,” said Bonchuk.

Leading Hot Air Balloon Pilot Falls to Death

While hot air balloon accidents are rare, when an emergency occurs, it’s very difficult to come back from. Despite one experienced pilot’s confidence this summer, he fell to his death after his gear got tangled in the balloon.

Brian Boland is a top hot air balloon pilot, known for his years of experience. The 72-year-old was taking four passengers on a flight over the Connecticut River when he got tangled in his gear beneath the balloon’s basket.

Shortly after takeoff, the balloon’s fire igniter went out. This caused the balloon to crash land into the ground. This would have been the end of it, but at the time, the igniter then relit, lifting the basket into the air before Boland could become untangled. He tragically fell to his death from an unknown height.

The inexperienced passengers were able to miraculously land – but they walked away with a devastating story.

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