SAN JOSE, Costa Rica — Four American tourists and a Costa Rican guide were killed in a weekend rafting accident in the Central American country, authorities said Sunday.
Three rafts flipped on the Naranjo river Saturday around 3 p.m. and the five victims were carried away downstream, according to the Judicial Investigation Organism. Other passengers managed to cling to the rafts and some were rescued by another guide in a kayak.
The organism identified those who died as Ernesto Sierra, Jorge Caso, Sergio Lorenzo and Andres Dennis. It did not list hometowns for them. The local guide was Kevin Thompson Reid.
In total there were 14 tourists aboard the rafts and five guides.
Authorities said the river was swollen by rains and the National Emergency Commission maintained an alert in the area due to the possibility of flooding.
The Americans had arrived in Costa Rice Oct. 18 and had been renting a house in Playa Hermosa de Jaco, according to the government.
The Red Cross said via Facebook that the rafts overturned near Liverpool de Quepos. Costa Rica President Carlos Alvarado expressed his dismay about the accident on Twitter.
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4 American tourists among 5 killed while rafting in Costa Rica
Oct. 21 (UPI) -- Five people, including four American tourists died after three rafts capsized in a river in Costa Rica. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert confirmed the deaths of the four U.S. citizens on Sunday, adding the United States was working with local authorities and was ready to provide consular assistance to U.S. citizens in the area.
"We extend our deepest condolences to their families and loved ones, and extend our gratitude to Government of Costa Rica for their support in this tragedy," Nauert wrote on Twitter Sunday.
Marco Monge, press officer for Costa Rica's Judicial Investigation Organization, identified the American victims as Ernesto Sierra, Jorge Caso, Sergio Lorenzo and Andres Denis, Florida's WPLG reported. Costa Rican tour guide Kevin Thompson Reid was also killed in the incident.
The incident occurred on Saturday afternoon when the three rafts capsizedin the Naranjo River in Naranjito de Quepos, Costa Rica's Ministry of Public Security said. General Director of the Public Police Force Daniel Calderon said about 18 tourists were traveling on the three rafts at the time of the incident and 13 were rescued.