QUINCY, IL -- Bad weather caused the Goodyear Blimp to make an unplanned stop in Illinois on Monday.
The Blimp, one of only three in the United States, was en route to Kansas City when strong winds forced a landing at Quincy Regional Airport.
"We're going to be covering the NASCAR race coming up this weekend, and because of the winds, we couldn't make it all the way to our destination--so we had to kind of stop short here in Quincy," said Pilot Greg Poppenhouse.
"If we tried to make it all the way to Kansas City today from Springfield, Illinois, it was going to take us 16 hours."
Landing the blimp is as big a production as you would expect.
"You're not, like, landing a plane, where you have a normal, I'm going to say, three degree angle as you come in to land," said Poppenhouse.
"We may be pointed at 10, 20, 30 degrees nose down, and driving it down to the crew. It takes at least 16 people--we can't leave it there. We have to have the ground crew to help support the ship."
The Blimp and crew spent Monday night in Quincy. The crew is hoping for calmer weather before continuing the flight to Kansas City.
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