NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. --
Two people are recovering from what officials said could have been a mid-air collision with birds on Monday. It's the leading theory in what ripped off the roof of a small single engine plane and forced it to land at New Smyrna Municipal Airport.
Officials said the two were able to land the plane without crashing. Officials have the plane in a hangar trying to confirm if the two people hit the birds or something else.
At more than 300mph, the pilot and co-pilot of a small plane experienced a mid-air emergency when the glass windshield of their cockpit shattered at 1,200 feet. Still, officials said they touched down at the New Smyrna Beach Municipal Airport Monday morning.
"With no cockpit, no goggles, blood all in their faces; how they were able to do it it was just amazing,” said firefighter Keven Stack.
Stack responded with another firefighter and took pictures of the the craft called a Questair 20.
"As we were walking up you could tell there was really maybe one section of cockpit still attached and everything else was gone,” said Stack.
In photographs, you could see the section of remaining glass splattered with blood. Stack said, despite the men suffering severe severe cuts to their faces, they survived and were in good spirits.
"Instead of two patients, we could have had two fatalities or even more. The pilot and co-pilot did an excellent job trying to bring that plane down,” said Stack.
Eyewitnesses said it looked as if the men would need plastic surgery. They are at the Halifax Medical Center recovering.
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