Two Killed When Plane Crashes Along TX Service Road

Fatal Texas plane crash
In this Monday, Dec. 21, 2020 photo, officials work at the scene of the fatal plane crash of a single-engine Wheeler Express CT near the intersection of Mayfield Road and Highway 360 in Grand Prairie, Texas. (Vernon Bryant/The Dallas Morning News via AP)

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (AP) — Two people were killed when a small plane crashed along a highway service road in North Texas shortly after taking off, authorities said.

The Federal Aviation Administration said the single-engine Wheeler Express CT crashed Monday afternoon about 1 mile (1.61 kilometers) west of the Grand Prairie Municipal Airport, located in the city just west of Dallas.

Grand Prairie Fire Chief Robert Fite said witnesses said the plane came down rapidly, hit a telephone pole and then struggled another 500 feet (152.40 meters) — hitting the concrete multiple times — before hitting a pickup truck traveling on the service road.

Fite said the person in the truck was slightly injured and was taken to the hospital as a precaution.

The plane caught fire after coming to rest in a grassy area near a Sonic drive-in restaurant, Fite said.

“The plane was in obvious distress coming down,” Fite said. “We do not know if this was an emergency landing or a catastrophic failure.”

Fire officials said in a news release that the identities of the two people aboard the plane who were killed were not being released at this time.

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.

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