19 people die in a plane crash in Tanzania

(CNN) — At least 19 people have died after a Precision Air commercial plane crashed into Lake Victoria in Tanzania, Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa said on Sunday.

“We are sorry to have lost 19 of our brothers and sisters following the rescue efforts. We believe there are no bodies left on the plane. We are starting to remove luggage and personal belongings from the plane. A team of doctors and security agencies have started the process of identifying the deceased and notifying the families,” said Majaliwa.

According to the prime minister, at the moment it is not clear whether two of the deceased were locals helping in the rescue operations or airline personnel excluded from the flight manifest.

“We will investigate where the other two came from,” he said.

Earlier in the day, the airline said at least 26 people had been rescued and taken to a hospital for medical treatment, and rescue operations were continuing.

The Precision Air commercial flight took off from Dar es Salaam and was en route to Bukoba before crashing into Lake Victoria on approach to Bukoba airport. There were 39 passengers on board and 4 crew members.

(Credit: oyondi2/Twitter)

A video circulating on social networks shows the plane submerged in the water while the emergency services coordinate the rescue efforts from nearby boats.

“We are trying to get the plane out of the water. We are trying to check if the wheels have touched the ground underwater or to find some other way to get it out of the lake. Right now, there is still communication from the cockpit. The pilots are still on contact us,” said Chalamila.

Publisher’s note: This article has been updated with the latest information.

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