The nation was shocked on Tuesday to hear of a catastrophic hot air balloon crash. The disaster, which claimed French, Hong Kong, Egyptian and Japanese victims, has also taken the lives of three British citizens. The total number of fatalities is nineteen, with two survivors, the pilot and a British national, in critical conditions after leaping from the burning basket. 


A spokesman for the Foreign Office has said: "The next of kin have been informed and our thoughts are with them and their families at this difficult time. We are providing them with consular assistance."
The Balloon is thought to have been flying at 1,000 feet when the explosion occurred -possibly triggered by a landing cable caught around a helium tube- setting in motion a series of events that will remain vivid in the minds of many for quite some time. The flaming balloon landed in agricultural fields near Luxor on the banks of the Nile and was found by sugar cane farmers. 


It was on one of the numerous dawn hot air balloon flights that the accident occurred. Civil Aviation Minister Wael al-Maadawi has said that a committee from the ministry would investigate the incident. All flights in the area have been suspended and the Egyptian Prime Minister has demanding an inquiry into the tragedy.


More information regarding the crash can be found on the BBC website