Blimp crashes near the U.S. Open at Erin Hills

WAUKESHA, Wis. - One person was injured after a blimp crashed near the U.S. Open at Erin Hills Thursday.

The crash happened about a half mile from the course around 11:15 a.m.

The pilot is OK but was taken to the hospital, according to Justin Maynard, a sales manager for Florida-based AirSign, the company that operates the blimp. The company's operations team on the ground reported on the pilot's status.

The pilot was the only person on board the blimp, the company said.

The pilot rode the blimp to the ground and the propane exploded after he was safe, according to reports from our sister station Today's TMJ4.

The commercial blimp was not affiliated with the United States Golf Association (USGA) or FOX Sports, the USGA said. 

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the pilot at this time," the USGA said in statement.

People in the area said they noticed the blimp was unusually close to the ground. One woman told NBC26 her thoughts are with the pilot.

"I'm very glad because it could've been disastrous," Jennifer Tepp said. "I'm really glad he's going to be alright."

Law enforcement is investigating the crash and its cause.

A woman attending the event posted this video of the blimp crash on Twitter:

The full statement from the USGA is below:

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