POMPANO BEACH (CBSMiami) – Three people on board a plane that crashed into the backyard of a Pompano Beach home survived and are recovering.
The Broward Sheriff's Office identified the three as pilot instructor Geoff White and students Sylvia Mena of Ecuador and Fernando Diaz of Peru.
"All three victims were severely burned. I don't know how they ever made it out," said Ryan Leonard who helped the victims following the crash.
The three, from Florida Aviation Academy, were practicing takeoffs and landings at the time of the crash.
All three remain hospitalized at Jackson Memorial Hospital's burn unit.
According to their web page, Florida Aviation Academy has been in business for 25 years and gives aspiring career pilots the opportunity to train.
Leonard said he was doing work in the neighborhood when he saw the plane go down and rushed to the crash scene. He said the victims were in shock
"One gentleman had asked me to take his gloves off," said Leonard. "I told them no you don't want to take them off. You know, something could happen, you know, health-wise or your skin could come off," said Leonard.
He went on, " I couldn't tell you whether it was oil or dirt but they were completely covered."
Meantime, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is conducting an investigation into the case. They said they plan on talking to the survivors once they are in good health.
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