The pilot of a single-engined light aircraft died on Saturday afternoon after his plane crashed into Tolo Harbour. No one else was on board.
The Civil Aviation Department said the dead pilot was one of their senior officials, who was passionate about flying. The department's deputy director, Kevin Choi, said they are all saddened by the loss.
Authorities say rescuers pulled the man from the plane's wreckage, which was almost intact and on the seabed some 16 metres below the surface. He was certified dead once ashore. The aircraft belonged to the Hong Kong Aviation Club.
Chan Wai-ho, marine division commander of the Fire Services Department, said poor water visibility made the rescue operation difficult.
Rescuers rushed to the scene after a man, who was fishing in Lo Fu Wut, called police and said a light aircraft had plunged into the sea.
Another man, who declined to be named, told RTHK that the pilot was his instructor, and that he had been flying a Czech-built aerobatic aircraft.
"Rest in Peace forever. You shall fly in our hearts," he wrote on his Facebook page.
Another Facebook user said he witnessed a plane doing aerobatic spins in the area.
The Civil Aviation Department will investigate the crash.
Last updated: 2016-02-27 HKT 19:56