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Google ‘Loon’ balloon hit power lines south of Yakima

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File photo from Google/Project Loon: Google says it wants to build a ring of balloons to fly around the world on the stratospheric winds and bring Internet access to all.

HARRAH, Wash. — An unmanned, high-altitude balloon owned by Google got tangled in power lines and crashed early Thursday, knocking out power to a small number of homes in the area, the Yakima Herald-Republic reported Friday.

According to the newspaper, the FAA said that Google had notified the agency Wednesday night that its high-tech balloon was descending so that aircraft could be alerted to stay out of its path.

Google’s Project Loon is developing solar-powered balloons that float high in the atmosphere, above commercial air space, and can be used to broadcast a wireless Internet signal in regions that lack access.

Harrah, on the Yakama Indian Reservation, is about 18 miles south of the city of Yakima.




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