As we detailed yesterday, a massive balloon crash has caused the deaths of several tourists in Luxor, Egypt.The death toll has risen to 19 from the reported 18, with the 19th victim being an English native who succumbed to his wounds at Luxor International Hospital.
“The tourists included nine from China's Hong Kong, four Japanese, two British, two French, one Egyptian and one Hungarian,” says Abul Naga Abdel-Rady, head of the Luxor's Ambulance Authority,
According to Mohamed Sultan, head of Egypt's Ambulance Authority, quoted by English East Day, two other people have survived the horrific accident.
“The other two injured people were transferred to Cairo. A Briton with an injury in the head was taken to Nasser Institute Hospital while an Egyptian with burns was transferred to Helmiya Military Hospital,” Sultan adds.
A source from the “Sky Cruise” company explains that the crash has been caused by a gas tank explosion, as previously suspected.
The incident occurred while the balloon was descending and getting close to landing, with workers pulling on the rope and causing the hose attached to the gas tanks to break apart.
“After the hose had been cut, the tanks exploded, and the balloon rose up in the air for 400 meters (1,312 feet) and got ablaze with 19 tourists inside,” the insider describes.
Some of the tourists on board the aircraft jumped to their deaths, when the passenger cabin caught fire. Others perished by remaining in the cabin as it was set ablaze.
“When the fire hit the body of the balloon, burning material fell inside the passenger box and forced a number of tourists to jump outside the balloon and die due to the high distance,” explains Ali Ahmed Ezz, a tour guide who witnessed the crash.