|Coast Guard Suspends Search for missing balloonist|
|Written by Glen Moyer|
|Wednesday, 30 January 2008 17:00|
Feb 15, 2008
JUNEAU, Alaska - The Coast Guard has suspended its search today for the hot-air balloonist reported missing January 31, 2008.
Michio Kanda, 58, departed Japan January 30th on a solo balloon flight to Portland, Oregon. Kanda's last reported position was approximately 435 miles south of Adak, Alaska.
During the 16-day search the Coast Guard searched over 40,000 square miles, roughly the size of Kentucky, with no sign of Mr. Kanda or the survival capsule attached to the balloon's gondola.
C-130 search planes from Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak conducted 16 searches of the area for over 200 hours, while the Coast Guard Cutters Rush and Jarvis steamed toward the last know position for a combined 144 hours before being forced to turn back due to weather. The Rush sustained a two-foot crack in its hull and was taking on water in 30 to 40-foot seas. Rush crewmembers were able to temporarily patch the hull allowing the cutter to make port in Dutch Harbor for further repairs.
"The weather took its toll and made for challenging search conditions," said Captain Michael Inman, Seventeenth Coast Guard District Chief of Response.
An Air National Guard C-130 from Anchorage also assisted with search efforts.
(courtesy Office of Public Affairs, U.S. Coast Guard 17th District)
Feb 1, 2008
Japanese balloonist Michio Kanda has been reported missing over the Pacific Ocean and a search is underway to locate him and his balloon. Kanda was attempting only the second ever crossing of the Pacific by a hot air balloon. Kanda had lanched his solo attempt on Thursday and had been keepiing in regular contact by satellite phone with a friend in Japan every two hours. After six hours of no contact with Kanda, his Japanese colleague called an Oregon contact who also failed to hear from Kanda. A Coast Guard search is underway. Kanda is reported missing some 435 miles south of Adak, Alaska.
January 31, 2008
(compiled from news wire reports)
Pacific Hot Air Flight Underway
A 58-year-old man from Saitama Prefecture departed Tochigi Prefecture, north of Tokyo, on Thursday morning to cross the Pacific solo in a hot-air balloon. Michio Kanda, an official of the government of the town of Kawajima, Saitama Prefecture, plans to arrive in North America in about 60 hours, after riding the jet stream at an altitude of around several thousand meters.
Kanda, who has been air-ballooning for 30 years, set the record of 50 hours and 38 minutes after leaving Calgary in Canada and landing in Jordan in the US state of Montana in 1997.
Kanda' balloon "Starlight", which measures 45 metres by 50 metres (149 feet by 165 feet), is the biggest in the world and the second biggest in history, according to a federation official.
Jan 19, 2008
Jaworski launches 3rd Annual Record flight attempt
For the third Winter in a row Rich Jaworski has lanched his tiny Adventure of the Heart balloon in search of another World Record. Jaworski launched early Saturday morning (Jan 19) from Grand Forks, ND. He has dedicated this flight to the memory of Ed Yost and Steve Fossett. Last year Jaworski set new world duration records for the AX4 and AX5 categories with a flight of 23 hours 11 minutes. Ice build up on the balloon forced him into an early landing. You can follow the progress of Jaworski's attempt at www.HunTel.net/adventure .
|Last Updated on Sunday, 12 April 2009 13:57|