Blind Pilot Flies Supersonic

  • E-Mail this Article
  • View Printable Article
  • Text size:

    • A
    • A
    • A

Miles Hilton-Barber, 59, an Englishman who has been blind for about 20 years, on Sunday flew with a sighted co-pilot at speeds up to 1,100 mph over Cape Town, South Africa. The English Electric Lightning jet climbed to 50,000 feet in under two minutes, according to the BBC. The record-setting event raised 50,000 for the charity Seeing is Believing, which helps blind children in developing countries. "There are 37 million blind people in the world today, and 28 million could see again tomorrow if the money was available," Hilton-Barber said. He previously flew an ultralight from London to Sydney, and has also tried wingwalking and mountain climbing.

"The rush was incredible. It was just wonderful," Hilton-Barber told the BBC. "Of course, I couldn't see anything but my co-pilot told me that when we were flying upside down at 50,000 feet, you could see the curve of the earth."