A hot air balloon crash in Luxor, Egypt, has killed 19 people, according to a report on Feb. 26 by CNN. The balloon was carrying 21 passengers and operators as the balloon attempted to land and plummeted 1,000 feet to the ground. This is the most deadly hot air balloon accident in the past 20 years.
The cause of the Tuesday morning crash is being attributed to a gas explosion on the hot air balloon. The balloon landed in sugar cane, and the smell and haze from the burning sugar cane was prevalent in the air, according to a first-hand observer from another balloon who talked to CNN.
Hot air balloons are a common tourist activity, allowing passengers to get an exceptional view of the Valley of the Kings, the Nile River, and the ancient temples of Karnak and Hatshepsut. Luxor is about a nine-hour drive from Cairo.
All hot air balloon flights in Luxor have been grounded until an investigation is conducted.
The pilot and one other Egyptian passenger survived the crash. Passengers on board included nine from Hong Kong, four from Japan, three from Britain, two from France and one from Hungary.