Thursday, October 15, 2009

Don't try this at home!

Sourced from: The Vancover Sun

Six-year-old boy in helium balloon appears to be crashing

ReutersOctober 15, 2009 12:29 PM

DENVER- A 6-year-old boy climbed into a small homemade aircraft — a balloon resembling a flying saucer — and floated thousands of metres into the air in Colorado on Thursday, local media said.

Authorities were trying to work out a way to bring the craft to land safely.

The Denver Post newspaper reported that the boy got into the aircraft, which it described as a "home-made flying saucer" at his family's home in Fort Collins and that it then came loose from its tether.

The father of the boy, Richard Heene, said he had been experimenting with the balloon with his sons, floating it just above the ground while it was tethered by ropes. His son, six-year-old Falcon Heene, is said to have climbed into the basket and the ropes came undone. Another brother ran into the house and alerted the parents, according to police.

The newspaper said that the aircraft was last spotted flying over nearby Weld County and that authorities were working with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to determine how best to get the boy down.

A National Guard chopper is currently trailing the balloon which was at one time estimated to be traveling at an altitude of 8,000 feet.

The balloon appears to be losing helium at this time and is moving at an estimated 20mph.

Air traffic around Denver is being rerouted.

More to come...

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