Are there times that balloons get caught in fast wind? Yes.
There are three types of landings in a hot air balloon. A stand-up landing, a fast wind (tip-over landing), and an emergency landing. 99.9% of all hot air balloon landings are stand-up or tip-over landings. Both are safe and a normal part of ballooning. Emergency landings only occur if powerline contact is imminent, there is a weather anomaly or mechanical equipment failure. We’ll chat later about why hot air balloons rarely have mechanical failures or get caught in funky weather.
Balloons can safely land in fast wind (it’s memorable and actually pretty fun!). However, it is crucial that as a passenger, you listen to the safety briefing and all pilot instructions before the landing sequence in the case that there is a fast wind landing.
Standard tip over landings occur when the wind speed on the surface is 8-18Kt. High wind landings would be winds greater than 18Kt. These high wind lands are usually from unpredictable winds that occur from thunderstorms hundreds of miles away or weather anomalies. Hot air balloon pilots are trained to discover outflow, and crew on the ground is trained to watch weather stations around the area to alert the pilots of any significant changes.