Two planes collided midair and crashed into an Idaho lake Sunday with an estimated eight people onboard, according to the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office.
“It is believed there are no survivors,” Kootenai County Lt. Ryan Higgins said in a statement on Facebook.
Two people were pulled from the water and pronounced dead at the scene, though they have yet to be identified.
The sheriff’s office was working to verify that there were eight people aboard the two planes, the statement said.
The two planes collided early Sunday afternoon and crashed into Lake Coeur d’Alene in Idaho, according to Higgins. They crashed near Powderhorn Bay, one of the more isolated parts of the lake.
Both planes have been located by a sonar team and are sitting in 127 feet of water, according to the statement.
I’m at Sun-Up Bay in Idaho where Sheriffs have been out on the water for hours. Two planes collided into each other over Lake CDA and there’s been two confirmed fatalities. Search operations will be taking place throughout the night as boat traffic has calmed down @KREM2 pic.twitter.com/6il4BCER2o
— Brandon T. Jones (@BrandonTJones_) July 6, 2020
One of the two planes involved was a Cessna 206, a small, single-engine plane, said Ian Gregor, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration, according to The New York Times.
8 people — all of the passengers and crew members onboard — are believed to have died after 2 planes collided in midair and crashed into a lake in Idaho https://t.co/UeorN97bTa
— The New York Times (@nytimes) July 6, 2020
The National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating the crash, according to KREM-TV.
The sheriff’s office expected that the entire investigation would be a multiday process.
Patrick Pearce, a certified pilot, said he witnessed the two planes approximately 800 feet above the water, The Spokesman-Review reported.
Pearce said he could tell that the planes were traveling fast by the sounds of their engines.
Higgins said an investigation was underway and that it was not immediately clear what may have caused the crash, The Times reported.
The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.
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