29/01/2017 8:42 AM AEDT | Updated 30/01/2017 10:12 AM AEDT

Three Killed After Crowded 4WD Washed Into NT River

A deadly tragedy has unfolded in the Top End.

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Three people have been killed attempting to cross a river in the Northern Territory.

Three people have been killed after being washed off a road while driving across a river in a remote part of the Northern Territory.

The victims, including a 61-year-old woman and 21-year-old man, died in the tragic incident that occurred when a Toyota troop carrier, reportedly with 20 people inside, attempted to make it across the Moyle River crossing near Peppimenarti, about 320 kilometres southwest of Darwin, on Friday night.

Police said 17 of the passengers managed to make it to the riverbank, but three others drowned in the flooded waterway after being trapped inside the vehicle, the ABC reports.

NT Police duty superintendent Rob Farmer said officers were alerted just after 9:00pm, local time, on Friday that a vehicle was pushed off the road.

Most "people made it to the safety of the riverbank but three of their party, a female and two males" vanished underwater, police said at the time.

The vehicle was later located about 50 metres downstream.

Police are said to be investigating if alcohol was a factor in the incident.

The crossing is approximately 14kms west of the Indigenous community of Peppimenarti on the remote Port Keats Road.