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Sala's death could have been caused by poisoning

Fresh report on Sala's death reveals probable cause for accident

August 14, 2019 By Oscar Rojas
The former striker and pilot David Ibbotson perished after the aircraft plummeted to the sea on January 21.

Emiliano Sala's case shocked the world back in January, and after an extensive investigation by the Air Accident Investigation Branch (AAIB), new details have emerged on why pilot David Ibbotson may have lost control of the Piper Malibu aircraft that was supposed to land in Cardiff City on January 21.

The report filed by the AAIB revealed that the ill-fated striker's body showed a potentially fatal amount of carbon monoxide in his blood.

According to the report, Sala's blood had 58% of the deadly gas in his blood, something that can cause seizures, unconsciousness or even heart attacks.

The investigation suggests that pilot David Ibbotson may have also been exposed to that amount of the gas, which may have taken a toll on his ability to fly the plane.

"It is clear from the symptoms that exposure to CO can reduce or inhibit a pilot's ability to fly an aircraft, depending on the level of that exposure," the report states.

AAIB's briefing also states that poor sealing of the cabin or leaks into the heating or ventilation system from the exhaust could have been the cause for both men to be exposed to the gas in the first place.

Cardiff City, the team that had hired Sala in the winter transfer window, issued a statement following this report.

"Cardiff City FC is concerned at the AAIB's latest report which once again highlights that the aircraft used for Emiliano Sala was not appropriate. We continue to believe that those who were instrumental in arranging its usage are held to account for this tragedy," the club's statement said.

Sala became the Bluebirds' all-time record signing after Nantes agreed to transfer the footballer for €17M (around $19M). Unfortunately, he was never able to play for his new team.

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