Divers have recovered a body after the apparent crash of a single-seater plane Sunday afternoon less near St. Petersburg’s Albert Whitted Airport, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
The agency said in a statement Sunday that the Coast Guard and partner agencies responded about 3 p.m. At that time, authorities said, Coast Guard Sector watch standers witnessed the apparent crash of a plan that belong to an ad banner towing company
A Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office dive teams recovered the deceased individual, who was not identified pending notification of next-of-kin.
St. Petersburg Police spokesman Mike Puetz said that the scene was about 75 yards south of the seawall at the airport.
Puetz said the plane belonged to an advertisement banner towing company based at the airport. He said according to witnesses the pilot had just picked up a banner and was beginning to climb when popping noise could be heard coming from the plane. According to authorities, the plane then appeared to head nose down and crash into the water.
Crews from the Coast Guard, Pinellas County and St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Eckerd College Search and Rescue arrived on scene to assist.