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Queen’s final flight becomes most tracked ever

Queen Elizabeth’s final flight on Tuesday has become the most tracked in history, according to an online service that gathers such data.

Flightradar24 said that the Royal Air Force flight carrying the body of the late monarch from Edinburgh, Scotland, to RAF Northolt near London ahead of Monday’s state funeral was tracked by 5 million people across its web and mobile app services.

Final flight of Queen Elizabeth II sets all-time flight tracking record.

Between web, apps, and live stream, 5 million people followed the flight from Edinburgh to RAF Northolt on Flightradar24. https://t.co/sCCrSadVLk pic.twitter.com/sdE9VMyH8f

— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) September 13, 2022

Flightradar24 revealed that the interest in the flight, which took around 70 minutes, put “unprecedented strain” on its platform, causing issues for some of those watching the progress of the Boeing C17-A Globemaster III aircraft as it made its way to London 32o miles south.

Those following the flight made an astonishing 76.2 million requests on the site, described by Flightradar24 as “any action by a user, like clicking on the flight icon, clicking on the aircraft information in the left side box, or adjusting settings.”

In a post about the record-breaking flight, Flightradar24 said: “We expected a large influx of users, but this immediate, massive spike was beyond what we had anticipated. Approximately 600,000 users were able to successfully follow the flight before performance degraded.

“As the stability of the site suffered, we implemented additional measures to ensure Flightradar24 remained accessible to as many users as possible, and users unable to access the site could continue to follow the flight via livestream [on YouTube].”

It added: “Even though our platform suffered under such heavy load, Queen Elizabeth II’s final flight from Edinburgh to RAF Northolt is by far the all-time most tracked flight on Flightradar24 and will likely remain at the top for a long while.”

Queen Elizabeth II died in Balmoral, Scotland, on September 8 after 70 years on the throne. The passing of the nation’s longest-serving monarch has dominated the headlines in the U.K., and with so much interest linked to related events such as the proclamation of King Charles III and preparations for the Queen’s funeral, it’s perhaps not surprising that so many people were curious about Tuesday’s flight.

Flightradar24’s previous tracking record was set just recently by the aircraft carrying U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taipei for her controversial trip to Taiwan, with around 2.2 million people visiting Flightradar24 to follow the plane while it was in the air.

Flightradar24 was created in 2006 by two Swedish aviation enthusiasts. The cross-platform service now tracks around 200,000 flights per day and has several million daily users, comprising everyone from serious aviation fanatics to those checking on the flight of a loved one.

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