FULL STORY: Plane carrying Brazillian soccer players crash in Colombia

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A plane carrying a South American football team has crashed in Colombia killing 25 people.

The flight was carrying the Brazilian side Chapecoense to Medellin airport when it disappeared off radar.

The hero pilot is reported to have opened a fuel door to release fuel and prevent a huge explosion in the seconds after the crash.

There were 72 passengers and 9 crew on board the charter plane, which was taking the 22-man squad to their match against Atletico Nacional.

Officials from Jose Maria Cordova International Airport reported there are at least six survivors in a statement.

However, Medellin’s mayor said there were ‘many survivors’ – including at least two footballers.

Doctors from a hospital in LaCeja waiting for wounded victims of the Chapecoense plane crash in Colombia
Doctors at a hospital waiting for wounded victims of the Chapecoense plane crash in Colombia (Photo: Twitter)
Emergency services near a scene of a plane crash close to Medellin
Emergency services near a scene of a plane crash close to Medellin (Photo: Facebook/Aviación Comercial en Colombia)
Medellin Mayor Fico Gutierrez arrives near the scene of a plane crash
Medellin Mayor Fico Gutierrez arrives near the scene of a plane crash (Photo: Twitter)

Defender Alan Ruschel and goalkeeper Danilo Padilha are reported to be two of the survivors taken to hospital.

Ruschel – who suffered a broken hip and head injuries – was heard asking medics to look after his wedding ring as he arrived at hospital.

A video shared on Twitter claimed to show the moment the plane disappeared from view on flight radar.

The plane reportedly crashed at around 10.15pm local time.

Alleged picture showing the Brazilian football team Chapecoense
The Brazilian football team Chapecoense pictured on board a plane (Photo: Twitter)
Brazil's Chapecoense players pose for pictures
Brazil’s Chapecoense players pose for pictures during the semi-final last week (Photo: Getty)

The pilot is believed to have declared an emergency around 10pm local time citing electrical failure.

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However, some news outlets have reported that lack of fuel was a factor in the crash.

The jet came down in Cerro Gordo in the municipality of La Union, according to Mi Oriente.

Colombia has been hit by heavy storms which are hampering rescue efforts.

“The site of the accident is only accessible by land due to climatic conditions and low visibility,” a statement from the airport said.

“The Colombian Air Force deployed a search and rescue helicopter which had to cancel the mission due to the adverse conditions.

“According to the authorities the police are mobilising all possible help since they are reporting six survivors.”

Suspected flight path of plane CP 2933
Suspected path of flight CP 2933 (Photo: Twitter)
Defender Alan Ruschel (R) is reported to be among the survivors (Photo: Reuters)

Colombian news website Noticias Caracol tweeted what is purported to be the first pictures of the wreckage.

Mirror Online has not been able to independently verify the images.

There have reportedly been a number of fatalities although an exact number is as yet unknown.

At least 10 people have been injured and are being evacuated from the scene, the commander of La Union fire department said, according to the website.

Chapecoense had reached the finals of the Copa Sudamericana by beating Argentina’s San Lorenzo over two legs in the semi-finals, which concluded last week.

Earlier in the day, the Chapocoense football team’s official Facebook page posted a video of the players waiting to board the flight at Viru Viru International Airport in the city of Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia.



A picture of the team on board a plane has been tweeted but it is unclear whether it was taken before the doomed flight.

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The team, from the city of Chapeco, were promoted to Brazil’s first division in 2014 and reached the final of South America’s second most important club competition last week after a victory against Argentina’s San Lorenzo.

2014 was the first time the club had competed in Brazil’s top division since the 1970s.

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