"I was watching from a distance as I live close by," the man told The Phuket News.
"Everyone was cheering as they went up in the lift. It got right to the top and the man was about to jump off when the lift came crashing down with the men inside of it I think."
He said there was "such a loud noise" and then a bang.
"Everyone was screaming for a long time after."
He said the company was meant to open yesterday, advertising a jump for B1700.
"The local people did try and stop this from being erected, but they couldn't stop it."
One of the dead was the company owner and the other was an engineer. A third was taken to hospital.