The plane carrying Queen Elizabeth’s coffin sets an all-time record


The RAF plane carrying Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin has broken records. Because, it became the most tracked flight ever.

According to flight tracking site flightradar24, some five million people followed online as the late Queen of England was flown from Edinburgh to London on September 13.

The figure comes from two sources: 4.79 million people who follow flight journeys on the Flightradar24 website and mobile app, plus 296,000 people who track planes on YouTube.

The moment broke the previous record, reached last month during the controversial visit of US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan. His flight to Taipei was tracked by about 2.9 million people.

The Royal Air Force plane carrying the Queen spent an hour and 12 minutes in flight. The plane landed at RAF Northolt, a military station about six miles from London’s Heathrow Airport.

RAF plane carrying Queen Elizabeth II's coffinRAF plane carrying Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin (Photo: CNN)

From Northolt, the Queen’s coffin was taken to Buckingham Palace. On Wednesday, September 14th, the casket will be delivered to Westminster Hall, Parliament, where the Queen will lie down until her funeral on Monday, September 19th at Westminster Abbey.

Flightradar24 is one of several aircraft tracking tools that is growing in popularity. The site started in Sweden in 2006 and became publicly accessible three years later.

The first major moment of concern was in 2010, when the eruption of the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajokull grounded and diverted thousands of flights across Europe and North America.

Ian Petchenik, the website’s director of communications, said the resulting spike in traffic was related to international events. Showing air traffic to the public in real time can influence the way people think about world news.

Prior to Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan, the most popular flight search on Flightradar24 was the flight of opposition leader Alexei Navalny back to Russia, where he will be jailed in 2021.

Flightradar24 staff know that Queen’s last air trip has the potential to be hugely popular. Their team tries to provide the best possible site stability, but the huge influx of new users proves a technical challenge.

“This immediate massive spike was beyond what we had anticipated,” Petchenik wrote in a blog post.

“In total we processed 76.2 million requests related to this flight alone. User actions such as clicking on the flight icon, clicking on aircraft information in the left-hand side box, or adjusting settings,” he added.

He predicts that this particular flight search record will remain unbreakable for a long time.

During her seven decades of reign, Queen Elizabeth traveled the world, making royal visits to places as far away as Bermuda, Nepal, Ghana, Mexico, Pakistan, Australia and Russia.

One of his last appearances was in May this year. It was when he attended the opening day of the Elizabeth Line, the new London pipeline named in his honor.

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