Coastguard says plane which went missing near Blackpool coastline probably 'ditched into the Irish Sea'

Rescue crews are searching for the aircraft after it fell off the radar at around 9am on Thursday morning

Caroline Mortimer@cjmortimer
Thursday 03 December 2015 18:54
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The pilot was due to land in Blackpool before the plane disappeared over the Irish Sea
The pilot was due to land in Blackpool before the plane disappeared over the Irish Sea

A search and rescue operation is currently underway to find a light aircraft which may have ditched into the Irish Sea.

The plane disappeared off the coast of Blackpool shortly before 9am.

The pilot was flying alone during a short flight from the Isle of Man to Blackpool airport.

The local Lytham St Anne Coastguard Rescue Team, along with three RNLI lifeboats - two from Lytham St Anne’s and one from Blackpool - are involved in the search of the three-mile search area.

In a statement on the UK Coastguard’s website, Duty Controller Matthew Mace said there was “a strong likelihood that this aircraft may have ditched into the sea after contact was lost and it disappeared from the radar”.

“We currently have a helicopter and several Coastguard teams out searching for this aircraft," he added.

A spokesman for Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service confirmed they were assisting with the search.

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