A plane which went missing on Thursday around Vero Beach, Florida has been located, authorities say. While three people have been found dead on board, their identities have not yet been revealed.CBS 12 reports the Cessna 310 aircraft has been found 20 miles west of Vero Beach. Rescue efforts led to a find the day after the plane was declared missing.
On Friday morning, the crash site had been located, with three casualties aboard. The pilot had lost all communication with the Miami control tower by 4:35 p.m. on Thursday. At the time, the plane was flying 15 miles west of Fort Pierce.
WPTV details that a search effort was centered on the Fort Drum Conservation Area. The swampy region is only accessible via helicopter or sailboat.
The plane disappeared shortly after taking off from Okeechobee. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the aircraft was headed for Bartow. Police are still investigating as to the identities of the victims of the crash.
An ALNOT, or alert notice, was issued when it lost contact with the tower, says FAA spokesperson Kathleen Bergen.
Local and federal authorities worked together to scour the swamp area located in the western section of Indian River County.
Indian River County Fire Rescue officers were brought in at 10:30 a.m., once the crash site was located. They collaborated with the National Transportation Safety Board to create a pathway to reach the remote location.
The operation took several hours, with Assistant Fire Chief Brian Burkeen stating that their crews were still at the accident spot as of 1:30 p.m.
St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Mark Weinberg tells reporters that rescue operations suffered a delay of a few hours because the “weather was too bad.”