Blimp Catches Fire and Crashes

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Video shows a blimp catch fire and crash near the U.S. Open Thursday morning.

The blimp, being used for aerial advertising at the U.S. Open, went down near Highway 83 and Highway 167, and did not come down on the course.

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

Twitter users captured some of the crash, adding that they saw a person evacuating with a parachute.

There's no word yet on what caused the problem.

The U.S. Open's official Twitter released a quick statement on the crash.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the pilot at this time".

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The Federal Aviation and Administration and National Transportation Safety Board have been called to investigate the crash.

"It started deflating, and then it started going down", said Bryan Rosine to the Journal-Sentinel. The blimp was not affiliated with the golf tournament.

The CEO of the blimp's operator AirSign, a Florida-based company, Patrick Walsh credited crew chief Matt Schmidt with saving pilot Trevor Thompson's life.

The Open, one of golf's four majors, opened play Thursday at the course in Erin, Wisconsin.

Maynard says only the pilot was on board the craft.

Spectators posted photos and videos online which appeared to show the blimp falling from the sky and crashing in woodland near the course.

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