Near-Record Winds Push Commercial Jets To Speed Of Sound, Creates Bumpy Ride

Benzinga ·  Feb 21 10:39

Near-record winds in the Northeast on Saturday, Feb. 17 reportedly caused commercial jets to reach speeds of more than 800 miles per hour (mph) ground speed.

That's technically faster than the speed of sound, which travels at roughly 750 mph.

Winds measuring at 265 mph were the second-fastest recorded winds ever for the region, according to the National Weather Service Baltimore / Washington. The service's official X account warned that customers flying could experience an extra boost.

"This evening's weather balloon launch detected the 2nd strongest upper-level wind recorded in local history going back to the mid 20th century!" NWS Baltimore / Washington tweeted. "Around 34,000-35,000 ft, winds peaked around 230 kt (265 mph!). For those flying eastbound in this jet, there will be quite a tailwind."

One Virgin Atlantic flight, which took off from D.C. and landed in London, shaved off more than 45 minutes of its scheduled flight time with the strong tailwind, according to NPR.

Other airlines, like United Airlines (NYSE:UAL), Delta Airlines (NYSE:DAL), Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) could also see flight times chopped down as winds remain high in certain areas of the U.S.

One social media user posted that he had just gotten caught in one of the jet streams on Tuesday night, saying it was "not fun."

Viral Video: There is a video going around, formerly known as Twitter, that falsely claims to be from the D.C. to London flight. There was a 'Community Notes' that debunked the video, pointing out that the particular clip was actually from a Russian flight.

Well, that's one way to get somewhere fast...
Freak winds in the Atlantic jet stream pushed three passenger airplanes to supersonic speeds of over 800mph - faster than the speed of sound.
Source: DailyMail

— Mario Nawfal (@MarioNawfal) February 20, 2024

Image: Pixabay

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