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NTSB releases preliminary report on Coeur d'Alene plane crash that killed eight

The National Transportation Safety Board released a preliminary report on their investigation into a plane crash over Lake Coeur d'Alene that killed eight people.

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho — Editor's note: The above video was from KREM's previous reporting on the Coeur d'Alene plane crash.

The National Transportation Safety Board, or NTSB, released a preliminary factual report on their investigation into a plane crash over Lake Coeur d'Alene that killed eight people in early July.

A de Havilland owned by Brooks Seaplane and a Cessna collided over Lake Coeur d'Alene on July 5, around 2 p.m. The pilot and the passenger in the Cessna as well as the pilot and all 5 passengers in the de Havilland died in the collision, according to the report. 

Witnesses of the accident described seeing the de Havilland flying north while the Cessna was headed south, according to the report. Witnesses said the airplanes were around 700 to 800 feet above the lake, and the Cessna may have been slightly lower than the de Havilland when they collided, according to the report.

Credit: NTSB

The victims of the float plane were previously identified as David E. Sorensen, a 57 year-old man from Clayton, California, PGA golfer Sean Frederickson his son, and two step children, as well as Brooks Seaplane pilot Neil Lunt.

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Lunt reported that the 20 minute tour flight took off from the seaplane base at the north end of Lake Coeur d'Alene, according to the report. Those who knew the Cessna pilot reported that plane took off from the Coeur d'Alene airport, heading for Lewiston.   

Family members and authorities identified the victims in the Cessna as 66-year-old Jay Cawley of Lewiston and 61-year-old Kelly Kreeger of Auburn, California. 

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Witnesses say they observed a fireball come from one of the airplanes as they descended into the water. 

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There was no radar or automatic dependent surveillance broadcast data for either plane, according to the report. 

The Kootenai County Sheriff's Office reported that both planes were submerged under nearly 130 feet of water between Half Round Bay and Black Rock Bay. The wreckage of both airplanes were documented and then transported to a secure location, according to the report.