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‘I hope we just don’t hit a power line’ Couple describes hot air balloon landing In Mechanicsville

Posted at 11:55 PM, Jul 13, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-14 14:07:08-04

MECHANICSVILLE, Va. -- A hot air balloon ride can be fun, romantic, and scenic, but one couple flying over Hanover County got all of that and then some when their balloon made an unscheduled landing in a Mechanicsville neighborhood.

"There's Danielle up in the air and you can see how high we are," said Kirsten Farnham as she showed a picture of her girlfriend from her cellphone.

Higher than 1,000 feet at one point, Farnham and her girlfriend Danielle Toman were riding in a hot air balloon Sunday night. About 35 minutes into ride the pilot informed them their trip would have to be cut short.

"He said that wind wasn't going to take us where we intended to land. So he was looking for a safe area to land since we weren't going to make it," Farnham said.

Toman added, "my first reaction was like okay, I have some trust in him I hope we just don't hit a power line because we were very close to them."

Last year, another balloon did strike a power line and all three people aboard were killed.

Hot air balloon makes an unscheduled landing in Mechanicsville (PHOTO: Patricia Ashley)

Hot air balloon makes an unscheduled landing in Mechanicsville (PHOTO: Patricia Ashley)

"It was crazy. I never experienced anything like that.  And everybody was very joyful and accepting and asking if we were okay. 'Did you land okay?' Very concerned for us," said Toman.

The neighbors not only made sure all three were okay, the also helped the pilot with balloon.

"He made it good for the entire neighborhood because everyone got to help with something. The kids got get in the basket. They got to help pack up the balloon, so it ended up turning into a neighborhood party," said Farnham.

And that good feeling means another hot air balloon ride could be in their future.

"It was fun, it was great. Yeah, we'd do it again! I'd do it again! With them!” Farnham and Toman said.

Unscheduled landings are not uncommon for hot air balloons due to wind gusts, the hot air balloon pilot said.