Budget airline breaks transatlantic record

The record for the fastest transatlantic flight by a conventional airliner has been broken by a low-cost carrier.

A Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner operated by Norwegian flew from New York to London Gatwick in just five hours and 13 minutes.

The flight, carrying 284 passengers, arrived in London 53 minutes early at 9.57pm on Monday.

Strong tailwinds over the Atlantic pushed the aircraft to a top speed of 776mph during the 3,500-mile flight.

The subsonic record is believed to have previously been held by a British Airways Boeing 777-200 jet which flew from New York to London in five hours and 16 minutes in 2015.

Norwegian captain Harold van Dam said: "The 787 Dreamliner is a pleasure to fly and it's a great feeling to know that we have set a new record in this aircraft.

"We were actually in the air for just over five hours and if it had not been for forecasted turbulence at lower altitude, we could have flown even faster."

Captain Harold van Dam claimed "we could have flown even faster" (Norwegian/PA)
Captain Harold van Dam claimed "we could have flown even faster" (Norwegian/PA)

The tail fin of the aircraft features a portrait of aviation pioneer Amy Johnson, who was the first female pilot to fly solo from Britain to Australia in 1930.

The quickest transatlantic passenger flight was set by Concorde - which flew at more than twice the speed of sound - at two hours and 52 minutes in 1996.