Steve Fossett breaks record for longest nonstop flight, lands safely

Saturday, February 11, 2006 File:Steve Fossett 04.jpg

Picture of Steve Fossett.
(Image missing from commons: image; log)

Steve Fossett, 61, has broken the record for flying the longest nonstop flight in aviation history and has landed safely in England although, Steve Ridgeway chief executive of Virgin Atlantic, the company sponsoring Fossett's record bid said, "he burst two tires on landing and the poor GlobalFlyer had to be dragged off the runway."

Fossett had to land at Bournemouth Airport in Dorset instead of his planned destination of Manston Airport in Kent, because of generator problems.

After the flight, Fossett told the press, "I was really lucky to make it here today, there was a lot going on. The tension of the final part really took it out of me, but I will be fine in the morning."

Fossett broke the previous record of 25,361 miles (40,210 km) (set by Dick Rutan flying the lightweight Voyager aircraft in 1986) when he passed over Shannon Ireland, even though he lost 750 pounds of fuel just after take-off from Kennedy Space Center Wednesday. His record has been recorded to have been broken at; 11:59am on February 11, 2006, (EST). His trip has taken about 80 hours (3 1/2 days) and covered 26,389.3 miles (42,469 km).

The plane Fossett was flying is a lightweight experimental aircraft. The GlobalFlyer is the only plane to make a non-stop circumnavigation of the earth on one tank of fuel.

Fossett has broken 110 world records.