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Witnesses reveal man's final conversation before tragically plummeting to his death from hot air balloon

Witnesses reveal man's final conversation before tragically plummeting to his death from hot air balloon

The man was one of ten in the balloon when he fell from the basket at an altitude of around 1,500ft

A man has died after falling out of a hot air balloon in Australia.

The balloon had been airborne for around half an hour when the man, who has not been identified, fell from the basket.

It took at around 7.00am local time on March 18 from CT Barling Reserve in northern Melbourne.

Warning: Contains graphic images which some readers may find distressing.

Emergency services were called, and the man's body was found on Albert Street in Preston at around 7.30am.

Police are not treating the death as suspicious, and are preparing a report for the coroner.

They are also conducting interviews with the balloon's pilot and its other occupants.

The man was one of ten people on board the balloon, which was at an altitude of around 1,500ft when he fell.

Others in the balloon said that he had been chatting to the pilot about politics as the balloon ascended.

After he fell the pilot immediately put out an emergency signal and was able to land the balloon safely.

The man fell 1,500ft.

Roads were closed off to motorists after a resident said his brother heard a 'loud bang' and the street was filled with sirens.

Speaking to 9News, he said: “I actually only heard the sirens, a lot of them.

“My brother heard a loud bang, almost like something like a large item falling in your house. And it wasn’t until we heard all the sirens that we came out.”

9News reported that power lines had been strewn across the street, and a white sheet had been placed on the pavement.

Both the National Commercial Hot-Air Ballooning Industry and the Australian Ballooning Federation have expressed their condolences to the man's family.

In a joint statement, the organisations said: "Hot air balloon baskets are designed with safety in mind, specifically to prevent passengers from falling out accidentally or from any accidental exit."

The organisations are also working to provide counselling to anyone who has been affected by the tragedy.

The death is not being treated as suspicious.

They added: "Passengers and the pilot are understandably traumatised by this tragedy and the operator is arranging psychological support and counselling for all affected."

A spokesperson for Victoria Police told Sky News: "Police will prepare a report for the coroner following the death of a man in [the suburb of] Preston on Monday 18 March.

"Emergency services were called to Albert Street where a man's body was located about 7.30am.

"The death is not being treated as suspicious."

The incident is also being investigated by the Air Transport Safety Bureau and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

Featured Image Credit: 9News

Topics: News, World News, Australia