CHICAGO (AP) _ A small plane carrying three passengers crashed into Lake Michigan immediately after takeoff Thursday, aviation officials said.

Divers found no one inside the plane, which was submerged in 22 feet of water about 100 yards offshore, said Chicago Aviation Department Commissioner Thomas Walker. The King Air 200 twin-engine turbo prop crashed upon departure from Meigs Field, a single-runway airport near Chicago's Loop.

The cause of the 8:30 p.m. crash was still unknown, said Chicago Aviation Department spokeswoman Monique Bond. Weather conditions were fine, she said. It was unclear where the plane was destined.

Fire department spokesman Will Knight said rescue efforts were hindered by low visibility and cold, murky water.

Meigs Field sits on Chicago's lakefront near the Adler Planetarium, Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium.