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'The motor was off, you just heard it hovering': Eyewitness recounts Arvada plane crash

Erick Garcia was on a walk to Walmart with his son Friday morning when he saw a plane glide overhead and eventually crash in a nearby yard, bursting into flames
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Posted at 4:52 PM, Jun 07, 2024

ARVADA, Colo. — Erick Garcia was on a walk to Walmart with his son Friday morning when he saw a plane glide overhead and eventually crash in a nearby yard, bursting into flames.

Garcia said the plane – a Beechcraft Bonanza that took off from the Centennial airport at 9:16 a.m., according to flight records – was in a “quiet glide” as it made a U-turn, apparently to find an open space to land.

“The motor was off, you just heard it hovering,” Garcia said. “You could already tell it was having an issue.”

When the plane got lower in the sky, Garcia said he followed it to where it eventually crashed, in the yard of a house on Brentwood Street.

“It caught flames as soon as it hit the [ground],” Garcia said. “As soon as I arrived at the scene I saw bodies on the [ground].”

Hear Erick Garcia's full eyewitness account of the crash in the video player below:

Garcia said he saw one person he believed to be a teen or preteen, and one adult at the scene of the crash. Arvada fire said four people, all of whom were inside the plan, were taken to a hospital with life-threatening injuries. Their conditions were unknown.

Garcia, who lives near the plane crash site and said he was on his way to Walmart to get snacks when it happened, said witnessing the crash was “shocking.”

“It’s not something you wake up expecting to see every day,” Garcia said. “It’s alarming that there are malfunctioning planes, or whatever the case [was]. It just makes me [shocked] and scared.”

The NTSB was investigating the crash. The names of those injured in the crash were not yet released early Friday afternoon.

VIDEO: What we know about the crash:

4 hurt in Arvada plane crash: What we know