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22 Jan, 2019 18:32

'Chances of survival are slim': Police update on missing striker Sala after search becomes desperate

'Chances of survival are slim': Police update on missing striker Sala after search becomes desperate

Guernsey police have announced chances of survival are "unfortunately slim" and reported "floating objects' being found in the search for the missing light aircraft carrying Cardiff City player Emiliano Sala.

Sala was announced as Cardiff's £15 million record signing on Saturday and was traveling from Nantes, France, to the Welsh capital when the Piper Malibu plane lost contact with air traffic control at an altitude of 2,300ft Monday evening.

Yesterday, Guernsey Police informed that a search was being conducted off the north of Alderney, in the English Channel, involving two helicopters alongside lifeboats.


That search resumed at 8.00am local time on Tuesday, for the two people on board, namely the aircraft's pilot and the Argentine footballer.

A slightly later update from the force reported that despite 1,000 sq miles being searched by a total of five aircraft and two lifeboats together with the Joint Emergency Services Control Centre, no trace of the aircraft had been found. 

"During the course of the 15-hour search, which used multiple air and sea assets from the Channel Islands, UK and France, a number of floating objects have been seen in the water. We have been unable to confirm whether any of these are from the missing aircraft," the force tweeted.

"We have found no signs of those on board. If they did land on the water, the chances of survival are at this stage, unfortunately, slim. Two planes and a lifeboat are still searching. A decision about an overnight search will be taken shortly," the force added. 

The last message from the Guernsey Police account was gave a 17.00 local time update in which it stated the search had been suspended due to sunset and would resume at sunrise on Wednesday.


In Nantes city center, a candlelit vigil was held where well-wishers lay wreaths and football jerseys. At Cardiff City's home stadium, fans lay shirts with messages including "pray for Sala" and even "RIP".

The missing 28-year-old's father Horacio told of his "despair" on Argentine TV channel C5N: "I didn’t know anything because I’m away from home, I’m a truck driver. A friend who saw it on TV told me. I'm in despair," Reuters reported.

Also on rt.com 'Growing concern': Massive search underway as striker Sala confirmed passenger on missing aircraft