Once the balloon has launched, the remaining equipment should be stowed securely in the chase vehicle. Double check the inflation and launch area to insure that no equipment and personal items have been left behind.
At this point, the crew must follow the balloon to it's landing spot. This is considered by many to be the most fun part of being on a chase crew.
First, most balloons will typically have a chase crew or assigned crew member to direct the ground portion of the ballooning adventure. That person is responsible for making certian the chase is safe, but each crew member is responsible for themselves as well, so make sure you're being safe.
Chase crews combine the use of ground-to-air radios, knowledge of area roads and the eyes of other crew members to watch the balloon and follow it to its landing spot. It is important that the person responsible for keeping an eye on the balloon is not the person driving. One to watch the road, the rest to watch the balloon.
Be sure to obey traffic laws. Also remembrer that even though you are trying to watch the balloon, others on the road may be doing the same thing. Beware and be cautious of distracted drivers and pedestrians
When the balloon is approaching a landing, the crew is responsible for a few things:
Making sure the vehicle is out of the way, not blocking main trafficways
Staying out from in front of a moving balloon...crew should always be upwind of the balloon
Keeping an eye out for sharp objects in the deflation area so the balloon won't rip.
Managing landowner relations...crew should never enter private property without first gaining permission, even if the balloon is alread on the ground. The CBC works hard to maintain relationships with area landowners, and not following rules can ruin it for other pilots who fly the same area.
When the balloon is landing, donít get in front of it. Always approach it from the sides or rear. Keep hands and feet out from underneath the basket, and be cautious of the burners. When safe to do so, crewmembers should put weight on the basket and hold it in position. Be sure to not get tangled up with the balloon or basket. By using only your hands to secure the balloon, can always let go.
And of course, always remember to listen to and follow the direction of the pilot.
The chase can be one of the most fun and exciting parts of the ballooning experience. Always remember to be safe and listen to the direction from the pilot or crew chief.