Emiliano Sala And Pilot Exposed to Harmful Carbon Monoxide During Plane Crash

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Emiliano Sala was exposed to harmful levels of carbon monoxide while on board the plane which crashed into the English Channel in January, investigators have found.

Sala, 28, and pilot David Ibbotson, 59, crashed on 21 January while travelling from Nantes in France to Cardiff.

Tests on the striker’s body found enough evidence of the harmful gas to cause a heart attack, seizure or unconsciousness, an interim report by the AAIB stated.

“Toxicology tests on the blood of the passenger showed a carboxyhaemoglobin (COHb) saturation level of 58 per cent,” the report read. “COHb is the combination product of carbon monoxide (CO) with haemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein molecule contained in red blood cells.

“A COHb level of 50% or above in an otherwise healthy individual is generally considered to be potentially fatal.

“In this type of aircraft, the cockpit is not separated from the cabin and it is considered likely that the pilot would also have been affected to some extent by exposure to CO.”

A full accident report is expected to be published next year.

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