(CNN) — Witnesses described in horror how they saw the small plane head directly down the canal before it crashed. Then there was smoke and flames.
“I thought I was dreaming. I blinked a few times, it was just like you see in the movies,” Harley Bone, the good Samaritan said.
Bone immediately rushed over to help.
The plane was already on fire, all three men were bleeding from injuries but were all conscious. The plane was already on fire…
“Got one guy out, got another guy out, got another guy out, because the fire was getting bigger,” Bone said.
Employees of Ballard Mortuary saw the whole thing happen but they felt helpless because they couldn’t get over the fence.
“It was bu-u-sh! I called 911. I said I need police, I need fire. I need everyone you can get, I need them to shut the freeway down because a plane just crashed,” Natasha Nunes, Ballard Mortuary Manager said.
“It was loud, it was a big crash against the water and the rocks. The black smoke was everywhere. It was just coming in our building, this entire area was all black. They were just driving slow and then when they saw the fire they were speeding to get past it.” Monique Bardo, Ballard Mortuary said.
Everyone had high praises for the pilot who avoided a more serious tragedy.
“He just swooped right under. The pilot saved their lives, what ever he did. He lined up with the canal, crashed just perfectly or he would have hit the bridge and they would have all been gone,” Bone said.
Those Island News talked to say they didn’t hear the engine sputter before it went down.
But again, quick action from bystanders helped fire and medical crews get on scene as soon as possible and get those on board out of harms way.