Cameron Z-350 balloon, G-VBFH
The balloon landed gently in light wind, and the basket remained upright. The pilot supervised initial disembarkation of four or five passengers, who assisted with the balloon control lines to ensure proper deflation of the envelope. Once the envelope was sufficiently deflated such that any risk of the balloon basket moving was removed, the pilot (who was still in the basket) instructed the remaining passengers to disembark. The pilot and his ground crew, who had recently arrived, became aware that a female passenger had fallen to the ground whilst getting out of the basket and suffered a significant leg injury. An ambulance was called to attend.
The pilot reported that the passengers received a safety briefing prior to flight and practised procedures for getting into and out of the basket. The basket had not moved during disembarkation and he thought it likely that the passenger had misjudged the distance to the ground. It is possible she had not used the lower of the foot step holes in the basket side.
Published 10 December 2014