CRESSKILL, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A small plane carrying two people crashed Thursday afternoon in Cresskill, and both of those on board survived, officials said.

As CBS2’s Joe Biermann reported, the pilot told an air traffic controller he had a “rough engine.” Moments later, he reported that he had a complete engine failure.

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The Cessna plane had originated out of LaGuardia Airport, but couldn’t make it back, 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.

He was given priority treatment to try to land at Teterboro Airport, but did not reach it. The pilot attempted to land in a field on Third Street and then the plane careened into some trees.

Police Chief Edward Wrixon said the plane went down between a crowded pool and baseball practice.

“Where they landed on the very edge of the field, in my opinion, they did a damn good job of averting a tragedy by getting over there,” Wrixon said.

Celia Epstein told WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell she was at a nearby swim club when she suspected there was trouble.

“But we just said, ‘Oh wow,’ because it was so low,” she said.

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Moments before the plane went down, John McCarthy told CBS2’s Valerie Castro he was walking his dog when he noticed he couldn’t hear the plane’s engine.

“Over Tenafly, you see a plane that’s only going about 50 feet off the ground, and you think something’s wrong,” he said.

McCarthy said the pilot’s decision to move the plane away from nearby homes and the Cresskill Swim Club was a heroic move.

“It came down over the high school and somehow got going around this way and ended up in a tree over there with an amazing move,” he said.

“He came around, avoided there was a pool over here with people in it. There’s a baseball field over here behind us. I heard there was people playing there,” said Cresskill resident Rudy Plaza.

Fire officials said two people were aboard the plane and that both were conscious and alert when first responders arrived.

“The one guy was trying to get out because the engine was smoking and he was obviously a little concerned about that,” said witness Joe Cosenchuck, who ran over to help after the plane went down.

Biermann reported seeing first responders take one person out of the aircraft who appeared to have facial, neck and back injuries.

Both were taken to Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack. They were last listed in serious condition, but with non-life threatening injuries, Castro reported.

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Officials told CBS2 the two people on the plane are volunteers with the U.S. Coast Guard, but they were not official Coast Guard assignment at the time of the crash.