Hot air balloon crash kills 3 in Wisconsin

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

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

He said initial witness reports indicated the balloon “appeared in distress” and collided with a Canadian National train.

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

Two of the three injured were airlifted to a Milwaukee-area hospital, 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 on board had crashed.

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

Burlington is a city of about 11,000 people 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.