KEY WEST, Fla. – Two people are dead and 10 others are missing after a boat traveling from Cuba overturned near the Florida Keys, officials said Thursday.
The U.S. Coast Guard responded to a location several miles off Key West around 1 p.m. after crews on routine patrol spotted multiple people in the water, according to the agency. Crews rescued eight people and pulled two bodies from the water, Petty Officer Jose Hernandez said.
Two Coast Guard cutters and several small boats continued to search the area Thursday evening for the missing passengers, Hernandez said. There was no immediate sign of the overturned boat.
The survivors reported that they left Puerto de Mariel, Cuba, on Sunday and capsized Wednesday evening, the Coast Guard said in a statement. The survivors were transferred to a Coast Guard vessel to receive food, water and medical attention, according to officials.
“We will continue to search through the night for those reported missing, and if any mariners see or hear anything, to render assistance if possible and contact the Coast Guard," said Key West command center supervisor Senior Chief Seth Haynes.
Authorities didn’t immediately say what type of boat the people had been traveling in.