HONOLULU (AP) - Coast Guard swimmers who rescued survivors of a deadly plane crash in Hawaii waters say the single-engine turboprop aircraft wasn't visible when they arrived.
The rescuers in two helicopters and an HC-130 airplane said Thursday that the nine people who were on the plane were spread out in two clusters across about a half-mile of water littered with random debris.
Aviation Survival Technician P.J. Ornot says the passengers were wearing inflatable life jackets, floating on their backs in the water. He says they were calm and seemed exhausted.
Rescue swimmer Mark Peer says when he swam to state Health Director Loretta Fuddy, she was unresponsive and he couldn't find a pulse.
Fuddy died, but the pilot and seven other passengers survived the crash.
HONOLULU (AP) - The owner of an airline that operated a plane that crashed in Hawaii waters and killed the director of the state health department says the crash was caused by engine failure.
Owner Richard Schuman of Makani Kai Air said Thursday that the pilot did the best he could to get the small plane carrying nine people down safely and keep them together in the ocean off of Molokai.
Schuman spoke in a live interview on KITV-TV. He said officials know what happened but not why.
Schuman says the pilot is physically OK.
Maui County officials say the National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash that occurred on Wednesday.
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