A private jet crashed this Sunday off Latvia, Swedish rescue services have advanced. The accident happened in the late afternoon, after NATO had mobilized fighter jets to follow the trajectory of the plane, which crashed under mysterious circumstances.
On the Cessna aircraft would follow four people, according to the German newspaper Bild, which does not cite any source. The Spanish The Country states that the passengers belonged to a German family, which owned the aircraft, and that the man was 72 years old and owned an aeronautical company specializing in private flights. He would be accompanied by his 68-year-old wife and their 26-year-old daughter. Another 27-year-old man would also be on board, who would not be related to the other three passengers.
According to site FlightRadar24, the Austrian-registered Cessna 551 jet, registration OEFGR, took off at 12:56 pm (1:56 pm in Lisbon) from the Andalusian airport of Jerez de la Frontera, in southern Spain. He will have left for Cologne, Germany. O The Country states that the aircraft reported that it had suffered a cabin depressurization while crossing French airspace, which could be the cause of the accident.
The jet made two changes of course, in Paris and Cologne, before heading straight towards the Baltic, passing close to Gotland, Sweden’s largest island.
Before crashing, the jet had been accompanied by fighter jets from Germany and Denmark, as it passed through the airspace of those countries. Both failed to make contact with the Cessna and saw no people in the cockpitaccording to Johan Wahlstrom of the Swedish Maritime Administration, which may indicate that the passengers were no longer conscious at this point.
The flight was listed on FlightRadar24 as rapidly losing speed and altitude at 17:37 (18:37 in Lisbon). O site stopped receiving information when the aircraft was heading at 2100 feet (640 meters), well away from the altitude of 36 thousand feet (about 10,900 meters) programmed for the route.
“We learned that the plane crashed (in the ocean) northwest of the city of Ventspils, Latvia,” a spokesman for Sweden’s rescue services said. “It disappeared from the radar,” he said. The aircraft was monitored in Swedish airspace until it ran out of fuel, already on a downward trajectory.
Latvia has already sent ships to the crash site and asked neighboring Lithuania to deploy an air force helicopter for search and rescue, according to a Lithuanian Air Force spokesman. The same source had said that a fighter from the NATO air policing mission in the Baltic had taken off from Amari airfield in Estonia to accompany the jet. However, he did not provide further details on the situation.