UK & World News
Egypt Balloon Crash: Luxor Grounds Flights
An investigation is under way in Egypt after 19 people - including two Britons and a UK resident - died in a hot air balloon crash.
Amateur footage shows smoke billowing from the balloon before it falls 1,000 feet to the ground during a sunrise flight near the ancient city of Luxor.
Luxor Governor Ezzat Saad imposed an immediate ban on all hot air balloon flights in the province as Prime Minister Hisham Qandil ordered the investigation.
Four investigating teams have been established to probe the causes of the crash.
According to one of the investigation teams, the balloon company, Sky Cruise, had passed a routine inspection by the Civil Aviation Ministry earlier this month.
An initial probe has ruled out any criminal activity as a cause of the accident, Egypt's official MENA news agency reported.
British nationals Yvonne Rennie and Joe Bampton, and Mr Bampton's partner, Hungarian-born UK resident Suzanna Gyetvai, were named as being among those killed.
Mrs Rennie's husband Michael, 49, is in hospital after he survived by leaping from the balloon before it exploded.
Witnesses said they heard a loud blast before seeing plumes of smoke as the balloon caught fire. People were seen jumping out from "about the height of a seven-storey building".
Speaking from Cairo, Sky's chief correspondent Stuart Ramsay described the flight's final moments.
He said as the balloon approached its landing point, it came within three metres (10 feet) of the ground.
At that point a fire broke out on-board, engulfing the balloon's pilot in flames. The pilot leapt from the basket.
"At this stage it's likely that Mr Rennie also was out of the basket, because his injuries are obviously not that bad, so he can't have fallen that far," Ramsay said.
"As the fire got going, the balloon started to heat up and to inflate, and (it) started to rise fairly rapidly. It eventually got to about a thousand feet. As it was rising, people were jumping off. It was moving very quickly. Those people died on impact.
"If you didn't get off in those early seconds, there was no chance that you would survive this because of the explosions that happened."
A spokeswoman at Luxor international hospital said Mr Rennie was in a stable condition.
Mr Bampton, 40, and Ms Gyetvai, 34, were from Clapham, south London.
Mr and Mrs Rennie, from Perth, Scotland, were described as "very nice people" who only spent the weekends together due to work commitments.
Neighbour Linda Kettles said: "They were very, very nice people who kept themselves to themselves.
"They've gone on holiday to enjoy themselves. They only get the weekends together and any break together is good for them.
"They were really looking forward to getting away. I'm totally devastated by the news. I really feel for their families."
The other tourists on board, including holidaymakers from France, Hong Kong and Japan, were all thought to have died in the explosion.
The only other survivor of the crash was the pilot, an Egyptian man, who is in hospital with burns to 60% of his body.