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Pilot, Passengers Rescued After Cessna Goes Down Off Bahamas

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FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Three Miami men are back on dry land after their plane crashed in the Bahamas early Monday morning.

The pilot, 70-year-old Ernie Martin managed to bring his Cessna down in the ocean within a mile of a Seacor Island Lines’ cargo ship.

The crew saw the plane crash and picked up the survivors.

They arrived at Port Everglades Monday afternoon.

“It was frightening,” said passenger Javier Avino.

He and friend Daniel Puig had just finished a vacation in Great Harbor Key.

The pilot says inexplicably both engines lost fuel and he knew he had to ditch the plane.

He told Avino to open the door before the crash landing which he did.

“I was thinking of my wife and kids and praying we would be okay.”

Puig said wearing his seat belt “prevented him from going through the windshield”.

Seacor CEO Michael Lafleur said he is proud of his crew.

“They followed safety procedures in identifying a plane that crashed and was able to pull them from the water.”

Click here to watch Joan Murray’s report.

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