British Airways flight breaks transatlantic record – thanks to Storm Ciara

A British Airways plane is thought to have made the fastest ever flight by a conventional airliner from New York to London.

The Boeing 747-436 made the 3,500-mile transatlantic journey in just 4 hours and 56 minutes, helped by strong tailwinds as Storm Ciara blew in.

The BA112 flight, which took off from John F Kennedy airport, was scheduled to land at Heathrow at 6.25am on Sunday but arrived 102 minutes early at 4.43am.

According to flight tracking website Flightradar24, the plane was one minute faster than Virgin Atlantic's flight VS4 which was due to land around the same time.

The Virgin Airbus A350-1041 made the same flight in four hours and 57 minutes.

BA said in a statement: "We always prioritise safety over speed records, but our highly trained pilots made the most of the conditions to get customers back to London well ahead of time."

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Storm Ciara
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Fans arrives in the heavy rain for the Premier League match at Bramall Lane between Sheffield United and AFC Bournemouth, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Fans arrive in the heavy rain for the Premier League match at Bramall Lane between Sheffield United and AFC Bournemouth, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
A fan arrives in the heavy rain for the Premier League match at Bramall Lane between Sheffield United and AFC Bournemouth, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Damage to one of the stands at Wisbech Town Football Club in Cambridgeshire, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
A fan arrives in the heavy rain for the Premier League match at Bramall Lane between Sheffield United and AFC Bournemouth, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Police attending the scene of a fallen tree blocking Furze Platt Road, Maidenhead as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Manchester City fans outside the Etihad Stadium where their Premier League match with West Ham United was called off due to extreme and escalating weather conditions, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Traffic passes through water on the A66 near Bowes in County Durham, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Traffic passes through water on the A66 near Bowes in County Durham, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Waves crash into the wall at Newhaven in East Sussex, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Onlookers watch as waves crash into the wall at Newhaven in East Sussex, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Waves crash into the wall at Newhaven in East Sussex, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK. (Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images)
A view of standing water outside Belle Vue Stadium where the Betfred Super League match between Wakefield Trinity and Catalans Dragons has been called off due to the weather, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK. (Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images)
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.
People sit in their cars to watch as they waves crash over the wall at Newhaven Harbour on the south coast of England on February 9, 2020, as Storm Ciara swept over the country. - Britain and Ireland hunkered down Sunday for a powerful storm expected to disrupt air, rail and sea links, cancel sports events, cut electrical power and damage property. With howling winds and driving rain, forecasters said Ciara would also hit France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany. (Photo by GLYN KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
People sit in their cars to watch as they waves crash over the wall at Newhaven Harbour on the south coast of England on February 9, 2020, as Storm Ciara swept over the country. - Britain and Ireland hunkered down Sunday for a powerful storm expected to disrupt air, rail and sea links, cancel sports events, cut electrical power and damage property. With howling winds and driving rain, forecasters said Ciara would also hit France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany. (Photo by GLYN KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
People watch the waves crash over Newhaven Lighthouse on the south coast of England on February 9, 2020, as Storm Ciara swept over the country. - Britain and Ireland hunkered down Sunday for a powerful storm expected to disrupt air, rail and sea links, cancel sports events, cut electrical power and damage property. With howling winds and driving rain, forecasters said Ciara would also hit France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany. (Photo by GLYN KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
PEBBLES, SCOTLAND - FEBRUARY 09: The river Tweed busts its banks in the Scottish Borders on February 09, 2020 near Peebles, United Kingdom. Amber weather warnings are in place as gusts of up to 90mph and heavy rain sweep across the UK with travellers facing disruption from Storm Ciara. (Photo by David Cheskin/Getty Images)
PEBBLES, SCOTLAND - FEBRUARY 09: A house cut off by flood water in the Scottish Border town of Peebles on February 09, 2020 near Peebles, United Kingdom. Amber weather warnings are in place as gusts of up to 90mph and heavy rain sweep across the UK with travellers facing disruption from Storm Ciara. (Photo by David Cheskin/Getty Images)
Traffic passes through water on the A66 near Bowes in County Durham, as Storm Ciara hits the UK. (Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images)
Traffic passes through water on the A66 near Bowes in County Durham, as Storm Ciara hits the UK. (Photo by Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images)
Onlookers watch the storm-churned waters at Newhaven in East Sussex, as Storm Ciara hits the UK. (Photo by Andrew Matthews/PA Images via Getty Images)
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The airline regained the subsonic record from Norwegian, whose Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner flew from New York to London Gatwick in five hours and 13 minutes in 2018.

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

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