Nothing can just match the experience you can get from riding in a hot air balloon. Much like other adventure sport on the other hand, there are some risks that are involved when you ride in a hot air balloon. There’ve been lots of cases when hot air balloons crashed and resulted to the untimely death of its riders. Unless you have studied the precautionary measures and guaranteed full protection, you must not go up and take a ride in the sky.
Here are few of the vital safety precautions and checks to be done before hitching a ride.
Number 1. Safety equipment – it is a basic necessity for every balloon to provide safety equipment to its passengers. See to it that you have gathered information from dependable sources like expert websites and ballooning guides. As minimum, you must check if the balloon has onboard flint spark lighter, fire extinguisher and parachutes.
Flint spark lighter is utilized in the event that the flame abruptly goes off in midair. The pilot will be able to relight the flame and avoid crash. On the other hand, fire extinguisher is vital for some obvious reasons.
You have to check if there’s a drop line too. If the pilot isn’t able to steer the balloon effectively because of mild wind, then this will be put into use, it’s the same reason why some other countries made it as a requirement. Since the balloon has a risk of getting damage from the ground obstruction, ground crew is using the drop line dropped by pilot throughout landing to be able to guide the hot air balloon from any obstruction in ground.
Number 2. Maintenance – it is sure to be unsafe to ride in balloons that haven’t been maintained on a regular basis. Similar to aircraft, regular maintenance in balloons are critical. A vulnerable part of any balloons is the fabric. Small rips or tears are enough to result to a disastrous flight and thus, any damage must be repaired immediately.
Number 3. Alertness – when you ride a hot air balloon, it is vitally important that you stay alert and attentive. When you are flying, sensitivity to the object is very important, so never disregard that. Be one of the pilot’s lookout for any obstacles that the balloon may go through like electrical lines, masts and poles. Sometimes, the pilot might be focused on just one thing and not on the other obstacles. In this case, make it your personal responsibility to be alert.
Number 4. Listen to what you’re told – you’ll be brief of the terms and the conditions in flight before taking off, make sure to follow these.