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Blimp goes down at US Open golf tournament in Wisconsin

16 June, 2017, 06:38 | Author: Rachael Silva
  • Dustin Johnson practises before the start of the US Open in Hartford Wisconsin

In spite of its presence near the notable tournament-one of the four majors championships that make up the top tier of global golf competition-the blimp, which was promoting federal credit union PenFed, was not affiliated with the U.S. Open, according to a statement released by the tournament's organizers on Twitter. "A couple seconds later he said he heard another rip sound". However, the envelope started collapsing and the burners were still burning the residual fuel.

"He did have some burns, but that, we're assuming, probably was a huge factor in protecting him", she said.

According to a statement for the USGA, the blimp went down around 11:15 a.m.

Patrick Walsh, the CEO of advertising firm AirSign, the firm that was using the blimp, told ESPN the pilot's name is Trevor Thompson. Rescue crews used utility vehicles to reach the crash site, about a half mile from the golf course. A handful of fans at the U.S. Open also posted video on Twitter of the craft's descent.

Justin Maynard, a sales manager for AirSign, said the company's operations team on the ground in Erin had no more definitive information on pilot's condition, other than the pilot was expected to be OK.


The dramatic incident was witnessed by several players as they progressed through the opening round of their tournament. It was a horrific scene.

About an hour before the crash, AirSign had retweeted a photo of a blimp on television in which a user described it as "ominously low". So it was pretty terrible.

Her daughter, an advanced emergency medical technician working on the scene, said that the pilot was alive when he was picked up by a helicopter near the farm, and is now "getting the medical treatment that he needs".

"It started deflating, and then it started going down", said Bryan Rosine. Ruediger says she saw the blimp disappear behind the tree line, drove to another vantage point and saw black smoke along with three fireballs erupting after it hit the field.

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