Three people died when a small plane crashed into the sea after taking off from the Bahamas en route to Florida.

The Bahamas Civil Aviation Department says the Piper Cherokee Six aircraft crashed Sunday afternoon about two miles off Bimini. The department says the single-engine, fixed-wing plane was carrying a pilot and two passengers.

The plane took off from New Providence island and was heading to Executive Airport in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The U.S. Coast Guard and Federal Aviation Administration initially said four people were aboard the plane.