Steve Fossett goes missing

Tourism

US adventurer Steve Fossett, who made record-breaking solo flights around the world by plane and balloon, is missing after taking off in Nevada in a small aircraft, aviation authorities said yesterday.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said Fossett was reported missing on Monday night after taking off from a ranch in a single engine aircraft in the morning. The FAA said the millionaire did not file a flight plan, nor was one required. It said Fossett had not been in communication with air traffic controllers and no distress signal has been received. Fossett founded a securities trading firm that made him millions, and once said that hedging financial risk in trading helped him manage risk in his adventures. Cmdr Douglas Russell of the naval air station in Fallon, Nevada, said: “It’s rough, mountainous terrain. There are not a lot of roads out there, rocky; picture, if you will, Afghanistan.”

Fossett spokesman Stuart Radnofsky said Fossett had been visiting the Flying M Ranch owned by Barron Hilton — a flying enthusiast and grandfather of socialite Paris Hilton — which he described as a popular sport flying centre. Fossett, became the first person to fly a balloon solo around the world in 2002 and in 2005 achieved the first solo nonstop flight around the world in a plane. Fossett has also competed in endurance competitions, swum the English Channel and set numerous world records in sailing. (businessday.co.za)

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