Authorities say at least three people are dead after a small plane crashed in a wooded area in eastern Louisiana.

Perry Rushing, chief of operations for the Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office, says the plane went down just before midnight Friday night in a wooded area west of Independence.

The cause of the crash was unknown. Rushing says weather did not appear to be a factor.

Citing preliminary reports, Rushing said the plane was flying from Slidell but said authorities weren't yet sure where it was headed.