Two students found dead inside large helium balloon
LUTZ, FLA. (Jun 5, 2006)
Two university students were found dead inside a large, deflated helium balloon after apparently pulling it down and crawling inside it.
The deaths of Jason Ackerman and Sara Rydman, both 21, appear to be accidental, Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Major Bob Schrader said.
Their bodies were found Saturday inside a deflated helium balloon at a condo complex a few kilometres north of Tampa. The 2.4-metre-diameter balloon was used to advertise the complex.
“It was more a fun thing they thought they were doing,” said Sara Rydman’s mother Linda. “You know how you blow up the balloon and suck the helium.”
The county medical examiner said yesterday the cause of death will not be released for weeks, until test results come back. Inhaling helium can quickly lead to brain damage and death from lack of oxygen.