Virgin flight hits record-breaking 801mph on flight to London: ‘Never ever seen this’

The jet was spurred by a powerful stream of air

Cathy Adams
Wednesday 20 February 2019 12:43
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Virgin Atlantic jet flies at more than 800mph travelling from LA to London

A Virgin Atlantic jet could have set a new record speed for a Dreamliner aircraft after it hurtled across the US East Coast at more than 800mph.

The jet was boosted by a powerful jet stream across the eastern US states, which clocked in at 231mph, the fastest for half a century, according to the National Weather Service in New York.

This added tailwind increased the speed of 3,500-mile-long Virgin Atlantic flight VS8 from Los Angeles to London Heathrow, which at one point hit 801mph while over Pennsylvania.

It could mark a new record speed for a Boeing 787 Dreamline aircraft, according to CBS News.

The typical cruising speed of a Dreamliner is 561mph.

Flight VS8, operated by a Boeing 787 aircraft, took nine hours and 34 minutes to reach London, according to flight tracking information – 48 minutes quicker than expected.

The Independent has contacted Boeing and Virgin Atlantic for comment.

Last January, a Norwegian Dreamliner flying from New York to London Gatwick recorded the fastest subsonic transatlantic flight in a commercial aircraft, touching down after five hours and 13 minutes. Strong tailwinds over the Atlantic Ocean pushed the aircraft to a top speed of 776mph during the flight.

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