Coast Guard ends search for missing plane that vanished in Bermuda Triangle

MIAMI — The Coast Guard says authorities have suspended the search for a small plane that apparently crashed into the ocean in the Bahamas with four people on board, including two children and a prominent New York businesswoman.

Air traffic control lost contact with the Mitsubishi MU-2B aircraft while it was heading to Florida from Puerto Rico. A search that included the Coast Guard and Bahamas Defense Forces located plane debris east of the Bahamian island of Eleuthera.

“This was a swift and significant loss and its impact has reverberated through everyone that participated in the search,” said Christopher Eddy, search and rescue mission coordinator. “Our hearts and prayers go out to all of the families involved.”The people on board the plane were identified as Nathan Ulrich, 52, of Lee, New Hampshire, and Jennifer Blumin of New York, 40, along with her 3- and 4-year-old sons.

The U.S. Air Force, Customs and Border Patrol and the Royal Bahamas Defense Force also assisted with the search, according to authorities.

A Coast Guard statement said the search area covered an expanse of ocean the size of Massachusetts before it was suspended late Thursday.

It is still unclear what caused the accident, authorities said.

A National Transportation Safety Board accident investigator has been assigned to this case to determine the probable cause of this accident.