GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (AP) — At least one person was killed when a small plane crashed along a highway service road in North Texas shortly after taking off Monday afternoon, authorities said.
The Federal Aviation Administration said the single-engine Wheeler Express CT crashed about 1 miles (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.”
Fite said they know there was more than one person killed who was aboard the plane, but need to talk to relatives and see the flight plan to determine the number of people killed.
The FAA said preliminary reports indicate two people were aboard. The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.