Two people are dead after their car fell off a ferry and plunged into the waters between Florida's Miami Beach and Fisher Island.
The Miami-Dade Police Department said the incident happened on Tuesday around 4 p.m. local time, as the Fisher Island Ferry was transporting vehicles from the island. A blue 2019 Mercedes Benz with two women inside went overboard and sank in Government Cut, a 50-foot-deep manmade shipping channel.
Divers from the Miami Dade Fire Rescue as well as the Miami-Dade Police Department launched a search and eventually located the sunken vehicle late that night with two unresponsive women inside.
Police announced early Wednesday morning that the car and the two deceased individuals inside had been recovered from the water. The victims have been identified by police as Emma Afra, 63, of Miami, Florida, and Viviane Brahms, 75, of Harrison, New York.
The medical examiner will determine the causes of death.
"The United States Coast Guard will be conducting a maritime incident investigation, and the Miami-Dade Police Department will conduct the death investigation," police spokesperson Alvaro Zabaleta said in a statement Wednesday.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber posted a statement on Facebook, calling the incident a "horrible tragedy."
Roberto Sosa, president and CEO of the Fisher Island Community Association, also released a statement in light of "the tragic loss of life."
"The entire Fisher Island community mourns their loss and our hearts and prayers go out to their families and loved ones at this very difficult time," Sosa said. "We continue to cooperate fully with the U.S. Coast Guard and other government agencies."
"The health and safety of our residents, guests and employees is our top priority," he added. "The Fisher Island Community Association will be providing counseling services to all residents, guests and employees."