ARCHIV - 29.03.2021, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Rostock-Laage: Ein Kampfflugzeug vom Typ «Eurofighter» vom Taktischen Luftwaffengeschwader 73 «Steinhoff» startet. In Laage bei Rostock ist die Ausbildung angehender Eurofighter-Piloten gebündelt. Fast eine Woche lang üben die Kampfpiloten des Geschwaders nun über Mecklenburg-Vorpommern das Fliegen bei Nacht. (zu dpa-lmv: «Kampfjets vom Fliegerhorst Laage starten zu Nachtflügen») Foto: Daniel Bockwoldt/dpa +++ dpa-Bildfunk +++

A private plane en route from Spain to Cologne flew over the Baltic Sea and crashed into the sea off the coast of Latvia. The Air Force confirmed the plane’s crash on Twitter on Sunday evening. Previously, all contact with the plane was broken off. According to “Bild” information, a pilot, a man, a woman and her daughter were on board.

The coastguard discovered traces of oil on the water and smaller pieces of debris, said Johan Ahlin from the Swedish maritime rescue agency, according to the Swedish broadcaster STV. There is probably no hope for the occupants of the plane.

As a spokesman for the Air Force confirmed to the German Press Agency on Sunday evening, alarm squads consisting of two Eurofighters rose in German airspace to get an idea of ​​the unusual flight behavior. According to initial findings, the pilot may have lost consciousness.

Aviation safety expert Hans Kjäll told Swedish news agency TT pressure problems could have caused passengers to lose consciousness. This can happen quickly, especially at altitudes where small aircraft are used.

A squad of the French army took over in the airspace over France, before a squad from Neuburg an der Donau and later from Rostock-Laage took off in German airspace.

As reported by the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter, when the Cessna 551 aircraft flew over the island of Rügen, it entered Swedish airspace, where it flew south of Gotland and further towards the Gulf of Riga and then crashed into the sea .

An official told the Latvian news agency Leta that the rescue operation is currently in full swing. Air Force forces also wanted to take part in the operation, for which a Stena Line passenger ferry was also diverted. The ferry should be ready for possible rescue operations.