Police in the United Kingdom are investigating a freak accident that occurred while a child was playing inside of an inflatable “zorb” ball.
The boy, who is nine years old, was catapulted 20 feet into the air after a small tornado crossed his path, the Liverpool Echo reported, adding that he was seriously injured and remains hospitalized. The incident occurred at a food and wine festival in Southhampton.
Shocked onlookers told the Echo that after a gust of wind occurred they witnessed the boy being suddenly taken high up into the air in the ball, made of transparent plastic.
"It was quite breezy then all of a sudden there was a gust of wind," an attendee said. "It (the inflatable ball) went over the trees and we thought it was a balloon at first before we realized it was one of the inflatables with a child inside and it landed right over there."
How common are 'zorb' ball accidents?
Zorbing is the recreation or sport of spinning downhill inside an orb.
In 2013, The Guardian reported a Russian man was killed and his friend seriously injured after their ride down a ski slope in a large inflatable zorb ball turned into tragedy.
Denis Burakov, 27, and his friend Vladimir Shcherbakov, 33, set off in the ball at a resort in the Caucasus mountains when the zorb continued rolling for about half a mile before finally stopping by a frozen lake. Emergency responders said both men were ejected from the rolling zorb and landed in the snow.