Australia

Fuel leak sparked Vic hot air balloon fire

A fuel leak sparked a fire during a hot air balloon ride over Victoria on Boxing Day last year, a transport safety investigation report has found.

A fuel leak has been identified as causing a fire on a hot air balloon flying over Victoria last year.

An Australian Transport Safety Bureau investigation found a fuel leak at one of the balloon's pilot burners ignited the fire after it departed Wandin, east of Melbourne, on Boxing Day.

The pilot was unable to control the fire because the fuel tank outlet and burners weren't shut off after the balloon caught alight, the investigation found.

"In the event of an in-flight balloon fire, the first priority must be isolation of the fuel supply at the fuel tank," ATSB executive director of transport safety, Nat Nagy, said in a report on Friday.

The Kavanagh B-350 hot air balloon was carrying a pilot and 15 passengers on a scenic flight when it caught fire.

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