Live

Watch CBSN Live

Texas hot-air balloon pilot's prescription drugs should have grounded him, experts say

WASHINGTON -- Medical experts say the pilot of a hot-air balloon that crashed in Texas, killing him and 15 others, had medical ailments and was prescribed numerous prescription drugs that should have prevented him from flying.

Hot air balloon pilot had drunk driving history

The National Transportation Safety Board was told during a hearing Friday that it appears Alfred “Skip” Nichols was using at least 10 different drugs at the time the balloon hit high-tension power lines before crashing into a pasture July 30 near Lockhart, about 60 miles northeast of San Antonio.

13697053102104811620109021108208426138067169n.jpg
Skip Nichols  Facebook

It’s not clear whether the 49-year-old was impaired during the early morning flight. A final NTSB report won’t be issued until early next year.

Nichols had at least four convictions for drunken driving and twice spent time in prison.