Footage of a fatal Zorb accident in Russia has emerged on the internet.
3 News has been unable to verify the video, apparently taken at Dombai ski resort near the Georgian border at the weekend. However, Russian state media has confirmed that an investigation into criminal negligence has been launched against the Zorb's operators.
Warning: The video contains footage that some viewers may find distressing
The video, which emerged yesterday, shows two men getting strapped into a Zorb at the top of a mountain before they set off down the slope. The Zorb rolls out of control toward the bottom of the mountain and veers off to the left, over a barrier made of snow and down towards a gorge, hitting a number of rocks along the way. Reports suggest the Zorb came to rest around 1km away on a frozen lake.
One of the Zorb’s riders, 27-year-old father of two Denis Burakov, died from a broken neck. His riding companion Vladimir Shcherbov, 33, was hospitalised and later released having suffered a concussion and multiple lacerations.
Two men in the video can be seen trying to stop the Zorb – one manages to block its path before falling over as the ball rolls past him. The second man trips twice whilst trying to get to the ball. An empty Zorb alone averages around 70kg in weight.
The video is made up from two sources; a second camera apparently further down the mountain captured the balls journey toward the gorge.
However the “obvious cutaway” had some Reddit users claiming the video was a fake.
Calls to the Dombai ski resort were not immediately returned.
The first Zorbing site was established in Rotorua, New Zealand but “hill rolling” is now practiced in a number of locations around the world.
An advertisement promoting the “new species of unusual entertainment” at Dombai says the “ice-zorb” promises a “guaranteed sense of gravity and weightlessness”.