Hot air balloon crash injures 3 in Wisconsin

Three people have life-threatening injuries after the hot air balloon they were in crashed in Wisconsin and may have collided with a train, officials said.

Police in Burlington responded around 8:15 p.m. to reports that a balloon had been struck by a train, Burlington Police Chief Brian Zmudzinski said in a statement.

He said that early reports from witnesses indicated the hot air balloon “appeared in distress” and collided with a Canadian National train.

It was not clear how fast the train was moving. Canadian National, a freight transportation company, did not immediately respond to a request for comment late Wednesday.

Two of the three injured were flown by helicopter to a hospital in the Milwaukee area, and a third was transported there by ground, Zmudzinski said. All three are adults, police said.

The Federal Aviation Administration said preliminary information was that a Cameron Balloons Z-90 hot air balloon with three people aboard crashed.

The cause of the crash is under investigation, and it involves federal transportation authorities as well as Canadian National, Zmudzinski said.

Burlington is a city of around 11,000 about 30 miles southwest of Milwaukee.

In June 2021, five people died in New Mexico after the hot air balloon they were in crashed into a power line in Albuquerque.