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Nine Injured, One Dead Found in Cuban Plane Search AreaAired September 19, 2000 - 2:15 p.m. ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: All of our attention this afternoon is focused on an area south of Key West, Florida. At last report, 180 miles south of Key West, Mark Potter reporting in from our bureau in Miami that nine injured people and one dead person have been plucked from the water by a Coast Guard vessel. They are presumed to have been aboard the plane, which was reported hijacked out of Cuba at 8:45 this morning.
Cuba calling Miami air control with the news of that plane hijack about 9:00 a.m. Eastern time. Some Air Force jets were scrambled from Homestead Air Force Base. Later, an AWACS surveillance jet was diverted to the area from a domestic training mission to help look for this missing plane. A KC-135 refueling jet had taken off, several Coast Guard vessels were in the area, three vessels immediately went to the area, three more were on the way.
We have large helicopters and some search jets over the area, a very intense search and rescue operation by the Coast Guard. A beacon was spotted not too long ago. Received word from the Air Force that an AWACS had picked up a beacon. Not long after that, Mark Potter reported that people had been picked from the water.
That is about all we know. We don't know whether the plane was hijacked or whether this was a dash for freedom, or if the people in the water, who now are safe and the one person who is not safe where from that aircraft.
We are continuing to keep pace with all we know about the story.
As soon as we know more, we will pass it along to you.
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