Light plane crashes into Channel
Published 12/11/2011 | 18:22
A Royal Navy vessel is helping in the search for a light aircraft that has crashed into the English Channel.
The Ministry of Defence said HMS Tyne, a river-class offshore patrol vessel, is being used because of its night vision capabilities.
A spokesman said: "HMS Tyne has been diverted from duties in UK waters to assist with the French-led operation to search for the light aircraft."
Colin La Ray, director of Guernsey Airport, said two people were on board the aircraft which came down 25 miles off the coast of the Channel Isle.
He said: "Shortly before 3.50pm a single engined private aircraft with two persons on board ditched into the sea - 25 miles north west off the coast of Guernsey.
"Emergency crews called to the scene included the Channel Islands Search and Rescue Helicopter.
"The aircraft was based in Alderney, and was en route from the south coast of the UK."
Mr La Ray said that as the plane had come down in international waters, French coastguards were co-ordinating the search and rescue efforts to locate "the casualties".
He said he did not have any information on where the plane had taken off from and whether the people on board had been found.