RICHMOND -- An underwater camera has located the fuselage of a Cessna 210 plane that plunged into the San Pablo Bay on Sunday, and underwater divers headed into the water Tuesday afternoon in an attempt to locate the pilot, authorities said.

A wing, a wheel and other small parts of the plane were also located about 1.5 miles off the shore near Point San Pablo Yacht Harbor in Richmond, said Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office spokesman Jimmy Lee. The fuselage, most likely containing the body, will be removed from the water Wednesday, authorities said.

"Our goal has always been to find the missing fuselage of the plane because we believe the remains of the missing pilot would be in the missing fuselage," Lee said. "They are somewhat certain the fuselage is down there and that is why we want to have those divers go in to confirm that."

Ships including a Coast Guard vessel search for signs of plane wreckage off Point San Pablo Yacht Club, Calif., on Sunday, April 27, 2014. Two planes were
Ships including a Coast Guard vessel search for signs of plane wreckage off Point San Pablo Yacht Club, Calif., on Sunday, April 27, 2014. Two planes were seen colliding in the area and witnesses said one crashed into the water. (Susan Tripp Pollard/Bay Area News Group) ( SUSAN TRIPP POLLARD )

The name of the pilot has not been released.

Lee said pinpointing the fuselage has taken two days because search crews needed radar data that authorities did not receive until Tuesday afternoon. The National Transportation Safety Board provided search teams with coordinates of the plane based on its last radar position about 4:05 p.m. Sunday, Lee said. "That helped us narrow down the search," he said.

The U.S. Coast Guard has blocked off an area about 200 feet around where the wreckage was found 13 feet below the surface. The search is being coordinated jointly by the NTSB and the Sheriff's Office. San Francisco police and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration helped with mapping Lee said, and he credited San Francisco police with locating what is believed to be the fuselage.


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The Cessna collided midair with a single-engine Hawker Sea Fury TMK20 while returning to its home airport in Amador County from a Half Moon Bay festival, and then plummeted into the water, authorities said.

The Hawker pilot landed safely at Eagle's Nest Airport in Ione, in Amador County, about 4:45 p.m., Federal Aviation Administration regional spokesman Ian Gregor said. A preliminary report from the FAA lists Sanders Aeronautics of Ione as the owner of both planes. It was not clear Tuesday if the pilot of the Hawker even realized the collision had occurred.

Officials said the Cessna was being used as a "chase plane" for the World War II-era Sea Fury when the collision occurred. Chase planes are used for aerial photography and to monitor real time flight activity. The two planes and the pilots had attended the Pacific Coast Dream Machines Show at the Half Moon Bay Airport on Sunday.

The two planes were close to each other at what seemed to be a low altitude when they appeared to collide, with the Cessna plummeting into the water, witnesses have said.

Contact Kristin J. Bender at kbender@bayareanewsgroup.com. Follow her at Twitter.com/kjbender.