A Kenyan farmer plans to sue search giant Google after one of its balloons landed in his farm. The balloon, which belongs to Project Loon, crashed in his farm last week and many people went to the area to see what it was.
The balloon did not cause any damage to his farm but he says the people who went to go see the crash did. The farmer wants compensation for the destruction of the crops after the crash. Hundreds of curious villagers reportedly entered his farm to get a look at the object that had crashed.
The balloon belongs to Project Loon, a program that focuses on bringing internet to remote areas around the world. The program has also been used to help Puerto Rico and Peru after natural disasters. The balloons are currently being tested around the world.
Joseph Nguthari, the owner of the farm, said it was emitting a lot of light and people came to see what it was. He added that some vehicles and motorcycles entered his farm without caution, trampling about seven acres. He finished by saying that experts from the company did not care to assess the damage left on his farm and neighbors.
In recent years, several balloons from the project have been found by people across the world. In February 2016, a balloon was found at a tea plantation in Sri Lanka. Last year, residents of a town in Colombia saw one of them crash. One resident told local media that they all thought it was a UFO or parts of a space craft. The balloons stay up for around three months and are then recovered by the company.
The farmer says people came to see what the object was and stepped on the beans and vegetables he is growing. They also got on his trees to get a better look, causing damage. He also said the situation got worse when police officers arrived to the area and shot in the air to disperse the curious crowd. People began running all over the crops after the shot was heard. He is now waiting for an expert to assess the damage so he can file a lawsuit against the search giant.