Small plane crashes in Costa Rica, killing 12

12 dead in private tourist plane crash in Costa Rica

Ministerio de Seguridad Pública Facebook

- Costa Rican authorities say 12 people are dead in a plane crash and 10 of the passengers were US citizens.

Solis said the government plans to open an investigation on Monday too look into the cause of the crash that left 12 people dead. Everyone on board the aircraft was killed.

Costa Rica's Public Safety Ministry posted pictures of the crash on its Facebook page, showing burning wreckage in a wooded area.

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Costa Rica's President expressed his condolences on Twitter.

The plane belonged to Nature Air and had taken off nearby, according to authorities. The process of recovering the bodies continued into the night in Costa Rica.

"There are no people alive", Security Minister Gustavo Mata said, adding that autopsies would be needed to confirm the total number and identities of victims because their remains were badly burned.

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The same plane had arrived in Punta Islita on Sunday morning from San Jose and was delayed in landing by strong winds, Cubillo said.

The two pilots were identified as Juan Manuel Retana Chinchilla and Emma Ramos.

This time of year is particularly busy in Costa Rica's coastal resort areas, which are especially popular with Americans looking to flee freezing weather conditions at home in search of tropical climates.

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