20 September 2015 - 7 Tishri 5776 - ז' תשרי ה' אלפים תשע"ו
Guinness World Record achieved for lowest altitude formation flight over The Dead Sea E-mail

Breaking records at the Dead Sea: 12 pilots flying six aircraft have been officially awarded a Guinness World Record for formation flying at the lowest altitude n the lowest place on earth, flying in an arrowhead formation over the Dead Sea, 422 metres below sea level.

This record breaking initiative was lead by Lt. Col. Dan Shion, a pilot and former fighter squadron commander of the air force. Following his army service he continued to fly as a hobby in a variety of ultralight aircraft. Shion decided to take up the challenge of entering the Guinness World Record with the flight recorded in Israel.

In order to achieve a Guinness World Record, a formation flight lasting more than one minute must be achieved at more than 355 feet below sea level.

Formation flying is when multiple planes are arranged geometrically flying close to each other in one route destination and accurately perform all the functions. It requires a high skill level of the pilots as even the smallest path deviation can result in an accident.

In addition to the risks incurred in formation flying at regular altitudes, there were also risks in his choice of destination, over the Dead Sea.

Flight over water often creates distortions in vision and perception about height and distance from the sea which again could lead to a disastrous mistake.

In order to accomplish this complicated flight a group of pilots were selected from the Israel Ultralight Association, and all barring one pilot were senior air force pilots and three of them served as combat wing commanders in the air force.

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