Srivaddhanaprabha had ‘minimal opportunity’ to escape helicopter

Rex Christensen
November 7, 2018

Giving evidence at the inquest, DCI David Sandall of Leicestershire police said: "On Saturday 27 October there was a helicopter crash in the vehicle park of the King Power stadium".

There was "minimal chance" for anyone to survive a helicopter crash outside Leicester City's stadium in which five people died, an inquest has heard.

Det Ch Supt David Sandall told the inquest an intense fire stopped anyone getting in or out of the cabin.

Leicester Coroner's Court heard on Tuesday that all five victims had been identified on CCTV at the stadium before boarding the helicopter.

'Therefore I am not in a position to continue with the inquest at this time'.

A date for the inquest's resumption has not been set.

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The inquest opened two days after Mr Srivaddhanaprabha's funeral took place in Thailand.

On top of the millions he poured into funding the club's rise from English football's second tier to Premier League winners in 2015/16, Vichai also donated generously to the local community of Leicester since buying the club in 2010.

Leicester City manager Claude Puel led numerous club's star players - including England defender Harry Maguire, striker Jamie Vardy, and goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel - into the Buddhist temple in Bangkok on Sunday.

A number of special tributes are planned ahead of the game with Burnley, including a solidarity walk being staged by supporters, where up to 20,0000 people will march from the city centre to the King Power Stadium.

Mr Vichai routinely flew from the stadium after matches and the helicopter came down less than a minute after taking off following a 1-1 draw with West Ham.

A police officer also confirmed the identities of those who died - Mr Srivaddhanaprabha, the helicopter's pilot Eric Swaffer, Mr Swaffer's partner Izabela Lechowicz, ex-Thai beauty queen Nursara Suknamai and Kaveporn Punpare, who worked for the Leicester City owner.

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