Two men died after their plane crashed into the Spokane River in Washington, a Spokane County medical examiner said Thursday. The men, identified as Lyndon Amestoy and Richard Runyon, were pulled out of the small plane, which sank in the waters late Thursday afternoon.
Jim Uttke, deputy medical investigator, who identified the victims, could not confirm the identity of the pilot, the Associated Press (AP) reported. Spokane Valley Fire Deputy Chief Andy Hail reportedly said that the two men were under water for nearly 30 minutes before divers pulled them out from the cold water.
The details about the victims could not be revealed until the arrival of a National Transport Safety Board (NTSB) investigator on Friday, a police spokeswoman reportedly said. The NTSB is expected to make arrangements to raise the plane from the river on Friday, authorities reportedly said.
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer told the AP that the plane was a Piper PA46, owned by Flying Colors Aviation LLC in Woodland Hills, California.
The men had reported engine trouble and were trying to make an emergency landing at Felts Field, a small public airport located northeast of downtown Spokane along the river's bank, local news outlet KREM-TV reported, citing a Spokane International Airport spokesman.
An investigation into the crash is underway.