Investigators say the single-engine Cirrus SR20 with the tail number N187PG departed from North Las Vegas Airport for Bryce Canyon shortly before 11 a.m. Tuesday, and that the company that owns the aircraft reported it missing when it failed to arrive at its destination.
The Kane County Sheriff's Office said that airborne search units spotted the wreckage around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday on a mountain near Zion National Park.
Efforts are underway to reach the crash site and recover the bodies.
The names of the victims have not been released.
Elite Flight Training and Management is the Las Vegas based company who rented out the aircraft. They issued a statement on Wednesday:
"At approximately 12:00pm on Tuesday, May 29th, 2012, Elite Flight Training and Management was infromed that Search and Rescue was receiving an emergency locator signal from one of our aircraft, a Cirrus Aircraft SR-20 (N187PG). The aircraft was traveling to southern Utah for a trip to Bryce Canyon. The pilot was very experienced in the aircraft and the flight was a non-training pleasure flight. Early on the morning of Wednesday May 30th, Search and Rescue discovered the aircraft in a remote area of Southern Utah. There were four people aboard the aircraft. Elite Flight Training and Management has no additional information and cannot comment on the ongoing NTSB investigation as to the cause of the accident. We would like to express our deepest condolences to the families of those onboard the aircraft."
The cause of the crash is being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board and the FAA.