Egypt PM orders probe into Luxor balloon crash that killed 19 tourists
LUXOR (AFP) - Egypt's prime minister has ordered an investigation following the deaths of up to 19 tourists in a fiery hot-air balloon crash during a sunrise flight over the ancient temple city of Luxor.
The balloon, carrying 20 tourists from Hong Kong, Japan, France, Britain and Hungary, along with the pilot, was flying at 300 metres (1,000 feet) when it caught fire, exploded and plunged to earth, a security official said.
The pilot and one tourist survived by jumping out of the basket at some point before it hit the ground, said an employee of Sky Cruise, which operates the balloon rides. Both were taken to hospital.
A video shot by a passenger on another flight appears to show smoke pouring from the balloon's basket for some time before the balloon itself collapses, leaving the basket full of tourists to freefall to earth.