Costa Rica plane crash leaves 12 dead

  • 01/01/2018
Nature Air website.
Nature Air website. Photo credit: Newshub.

Ten foreign tourists are among at least 12 people who have died in a plane crash in Costa Rica, the country's security ministry says.

The deceased also included two Costa Rican pilots for the aircraft, which was operated by local company Nature Air, Enio Cubillo, director of Costa Rica's civil aviation agency, told local media.

The crash happened in the mountainous area of Punta Islita, which is popular with tourists, in the province of Guanacaste, about 230km west of the capital of San Jose.

The cause of the crash is not yet known and Nature Air could not immediately be reached for comment.

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

Former President Laura Chinchilla said on Twitter that her cousin, one of the crew members, had died in the accident.

Punta Islita, on Costa Rica's Pacific Coast, is popular among North American and European tourists for its pristine beaches and lush landscape.