5 people rescued after private plane crashes into waters near Bahamas: Authorities

The plane was traveling to West Palm Beach, authorities said.

June 1, 2023, 7:42 PM

Five people were rescued after a private plane crashed into waters near the Bahamas on Thursday, the Bahamas' Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority told ABC News.

The plane was en route to Florida when it crash-landed into the water about 10 nautical miles north of Andros, an island in the Bahamas, the Royal Bahamas Police Force said during a press conference Thursday.

Two pilots and three passengers were aboard the flight, according to Volunteer Pilot Group, a Florida-based organization that connects volunteer pilots with passengers in need and said it had arranged the flight.

All five were rescued and transported back to Andros Island, authorities said. They are being transported to receive medical care for non-life-threatening injuries, authorities said.

The plane was a single-engine Piper PA-32 aircraft with United States registration, the Aircraft Accident Investigation Authority said.

The aircraft had departed the San Andros Airport in Andros and was en route to Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach when "the pilot encountered issues and attempted to return to Andros Island," the agency said.

The crash was caused by "mechanical issues," the Royal Bahamas Police Force said in a statement.

The aircraft had lost power when the pilots made the emergency water landing, Volunteer Pilot Group said.

"The pilot was able to land the aircraft safely into shallow waters, without any casualties," police said.

The pilots and passengers were then picked up by a local fishing boat and brought back to Andros, Volunteer Pilot Group said.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Royal Bahamas Defence Force and Royal Bahamas Police Force responded to the scene.

"[Volunteer Pilot Group] is very pleased that all involved are safe and sound, and we appreciate the assistance rendered to our friends by the locals, as well as by Bahamian and U.S. government agencies," Volunteer Pilot Group said in a statement.

The crash remains under investigation.

ABC News' Jared Higgs, Rachel DeLima and Sam Sweeney contributed to this report.