A Jewish family of 5 from New York are among 10 American tourists who were killed in a fiery plane crash in the mountains of Costa Rica on Sunday.
The Costa Rican government said that the plane had 12 people on board before it crashed in a wooded area. The 10 passengers and 2 Costa Rican pilots all died.
“There are no people alive,” Security Minister Gustavo Mata said. Autopsies are pending to confirm the badly burned victims’ identities.
The Diario Las Americos reported that the American family of five on board the aircraft has been identified as Bruce Steinberg, 50, his wife Irene, 51, and their 3 sons Matthew, William and Zachary Steinberg.
The family is from Scarsdale, and are affiliated with the Westchester Reform Temple.
Another Jewish women, Leslie Levin Weiss from Belaire, Florida, was among the other victims identified by Costa Rican media, who also listed several other unconfirmed fatalities.
Other unconfirmed reports indicate Weiss’ husband Mitchell Weiss and daughter Hannah Mae Weiss were on board the flight.
The Costa Rican crew members were identified as Juan Manuel Retana and Emma Ramos Calderon.
The Nature Air charter flight took off just after noon Sunday from Punta Islita airport and was headed for the capital of San Jose when it crashed shortly after takeoff, according to Enio Cubillo, director of Costa Rica Civil Aviation.
Cubillo said the cause was under investigation, adding the pilot was very experienced.
The Aviation Safey Network Web site said the plane was a single-engine Cessna 208B Grand Caravan, owned and operated by Nature Air.
(Yossi Taub – YWN)