HELSINKI– Four passengers on a private jet traveling from Spain to Germany have been killed after the plane crashed in the Baltic Sea off the coast of Latvia on Sunday, according to Swedish and German media.
The Cessna Citation 551 jet, which had taken off from the Spanish city of Jerez in the afternoon, disappeared from radar as it flew over the Baltic Sea northwest of the Latvian port city of Ventspils, reports the Swedish news agency TT.
The aircraft, registered in Austria, was en route to Cologne, Germany. German media said the passengers were a family of three – a man, a woman and their daughter – in addition to the pilot.
German newspaper Bild said the plane reported shortly after takeoff that there was a cabin pressurization problem. But authorities lost radio contact with the plane soon after, and Spanish and French warplanes were sent to intercept the aircraft.
But when they reached the plane, they didn’t see anyone sitting in the cockpit, Bild said.
Rescue vessels and Latvian and Swedish coastguards were patrolling the crash site and a nearby passenger ferry was alerted to help with the effort. Debris from the plane and an oil spill were discovered at the site, Swedish media reported.