British Balloonist Reaches Record Altitude, But Faces FAA Fallout
British adventurer David Hempleman-Adams may have set an altitude record Tuesday in Colorado when he reached 42,000 feet in his open-basket Roziere balloon, a hybrid gas/hot-air design, but in the process he ran into some flak from the FAA. It seems that although Hempleman-Adams maintained radio contact with ATC during the flight, the FAA says he should have made arrangements with them in advance before invading the flight levels. The record attempt will be verified by the Federation Aeronautique Internationale, which could take several months. Hempleman-Adams, 46, was the first person to reach the North and South Geographical and Magnetic Poles and scale the highest mountain in each continent, including Mount Everest. In 2000, he became the first man to fly a balloon over the North Pole.