The U.S. Coast Guard suspended its search for survivors after a seaplane crashed in Washington State on Sunday afternoon.
All ten people aboard the aircraft are presumed dead and the mission will now become a recovery effort rather than an active search and rescue, The Seattle Times reported.
“It is always difficult when it comes time to make a decision to stop searching,” Capt. Daniel Broadhurst, the incident management branch chief for the Coast Guard’s 13th Coast Guard, said in a statement. “The hearts of all the first responders go out to those who lost a family member, a loved one or a friend in the crash.”
Officials said the aircraft crashed just after 3 p.m. local time in Mutiny Bay, west of Whidbey Island, Wash. Nine adults and one child were traveling aboard the plane from the town of Friday Harbor en route to Renton, a suburb of Seattle.
Rescue crews recovered one body at the scene. Nine others remain unaccounted for.
The Coast Guard said it’s unknown what caused the incident, adding there was no distress call from the plane before it crashed into the water. They said the plane was a de Havilland DHC-3 Otter, a single-engine propeller aircraft.
Northwest Seaplanes, the owner of the aircraft, said the company was “heartbroken” after the accident, saying there was no word yet what caused the fatal crash.
“We have been in communication with the families,” the company said. “We are praying for the families involved, including our pilot and his family.”