BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific North Midlands/East West/South-West London/South North Midlands/East West/South-West London/South
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: UK: England  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Wednesday, 25 September, 2002, 06:13 GMT 07:13 UK
Balloonist heads for the Atlantic
David Hempleman-Adams before take-off
Mr Hempleman-Adams has some technical problems
British explorer David Hempleman-Adams is said to be "doing fine" in his bid to cross the Atlantic in a balloon with an old-fashioned wicker basket.

The 45-year-old adventurer from Wiltshire is hoping to beat five records including the solo world distance record of 5,340km (3,337.5 miles) for the helium and hot-air balloon type .

At 0600 BST on Wednesday, 19 hours into his flight, Mr Hempleman-Adams was north of New York.

He is expected to reach the Atlantic coast near Maine at around midday UK time, the Atlantic Challenger co-ordinating control room said.

In the air above Pittsburgh
The balloon is flying at an altitude of 10,000ft
The flight support team said technicians are trying to iron out some technical defects with one of the balloon's two burners, which was not operating properly because of the cold.

A spokesman said: "There's a problem with one of his burners but the flight's okay.

"We think it's just a routine problem."

There was almost a disaster when the balloon took off from Allegheny County airport near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on Tuesday.

The craft came within 10 ft of crashing causing Mr Hempleman-Adams to rapidly throw sand ballast from the basket.

Lack of sleep

But following the scare the balloon climbed to an altitude of 10,000 ft and headed east.

The launch site, some 450 miles inland, was chosen to give the balloonist an opportunity to test the equipment over the relative safety of dry land before hitting the coast.

During the flight, which is expected to last six days, Mr Hempleman-Adams could have to deal with temperatures as low as minus 30C.

He will also only be able to sleep for a maximum of one hour at a time in order to keep control of the craft.


Click here to go to BBC Wiltshire
See also:

24 Sep 02 | England
03 Jul 02 | Asia-Pacific
01 Jun 00 | Europe
29 Apr 98 | In Depth
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more England stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more England stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes