Emiliano Sala: Wreckage from the plane carrying the missing Cardiff City player, Emiliano Sala and pilot David Ibbotson has been found in the English Channel.
Reports say that The Piper Malibu N264DB was lost on 21 January on its way from Nantes, France, to Cardiff, with the Argentine striker and pilot David Ibbotson on board.
A search boat hired privately by Sala’s Argentinian family – thanks partly to a crowdfunding appeal – located the wreckage on Sunday morning.
The crew passed the details of the location on to government investigators, who used a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) to examine the spot.
Accident investigators are expected to send a submersible to inspect the wreckage later on Monday, 4 February.
It’s said that there was no immediate official confirmation of what was found but the shipwreck specialist leading the private investigation, David Mearns, said the plane had been discovered.
He said: “All I will say, is that there is a substantial amount of wreckage on the seabed.”
Parts of the plane were found after about three hours of searching on Sunday morning.
The missing plane had been located by the privately hired vessel FPV Morven, which had passed the information on to the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB).
Mearns said the AAIB had moved its vessel, the Geo Ocean III, to the spot and visually identified the wreckage with an ROV.
“Wreckage of the plane carrying Emiliano Sala and piloted by David Ibbotson was located early this morning by the FPV MORVEN. As agreed with the AAIB they moved the GEO OCEAN III over the position we provided them to visually identify the plane by ROV.” David Mearns tweeted
In addition, the family of Cardiff City striker Emiliano Sala and the pilot, David Ibbotson, had been informed and the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) would be making a statement on Monday. It is believed it will be up to the AAIB to recover the vessel.
No information about whether any bodies were in the plane was given. Two seat covers from the aircraft washed up last week on the coast of France.
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