Albuquerque, NM (September 22, 2021) — A new report from the Federal Aviation Administration reports the man piloting a hot air balloon that went down in June had drugs in his system at the time of the accident.

Nicholas Meleski, the pilot, reportedly had marijuana and cocaine in his system when the hot air balloon fell out of the sky on June 26, 2021. Meleski, along with his four passengers, all died in the crash.

The four passengers were Mary and Martin Martinez and Susan and John Montoya.

The National Transportation Safety Board has not publicly identified the cause of the accident. Witnesses reported that the balloon separated from the basket after colliding with some power lines. The basket then crashed onto a busy street intersection.

Federal officials reported this as the deadliest balloon crash in New Mexico’s history.Source: Associated Press

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