Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Authorities Find No Survivors From Cameroon Plane Crash

MBANGA-PONGO, Cameroon -- None of the 114 people aboard a Kenya Airways flight survived its crash into a thick mangrove swamp over the weekend, an official said Monday after seeing the water-filled crater the plane left.

Asked whether anyone survived, Luc Ndjodo, a local government official in charge of the recovery effort, said, "No."

Ndjodo added that he had surveyed the entire site, about as large as a football field, and saw no survivors. "I was there. I saw none."

The plane was submerged in murky, orange-brown water on which scraps of metal and plastic floated. Workers stretched a hose in preparation for pumping out the water.

"We assume that a large part of the plane is underwater," Ndjodo said. "I only saw pieces."

Workers placed bodies and body parts found nearby on stretchers and carried them to ambulances that had driven as close as vehicles could get, about a 20-minute hike to the site. Trees had been chopped down and placed over puddles to make the walk easier. Members of the recovery team -- some soldiers in camouflage and red berets, others barefoot villagers in shorts and T-shirts -- used branches as walking sticks.

Much of the debris, some of it hanging from trees, was shredded beyond recognition. But small items were intact -- a white tennis shoe, a black purse of braided leather, an orange-and-blue length of cloth a woman might have worn as a skirt.

Thomas Sobakam, chief of meteorology for the airport from which the plane departed, said the plane nose-dived into the swamp and disintegrated on impact.

"The plane fell head first. Its nose was buried in the mangrove swamp," Sobakam had said earlier.