Doctor dead after plane hits guy-wire of West Texas TV tower

AP News
Posted: Feb 05, 2015 7:03 PM

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) — A Lubbock doctor was killed after the small plane he was piloting crashed into a guy-wire attached to a TV tower as he approached an airport in West Texas, authorities said Thursday.

Lubbock police Lt. Ray Mendoza said the pilot, Dr. Kenneth Michael Rice, was alone in the plane when it crashed late Wednesday.

National Transportation Safety Board investigator Josh Lindberg said Thursday the single-engine Piper PA-46 crashed into the guy-wire of the 814-foot KCBD-TV tower while approaching Preston Smith International Airport on a flight from Carlsbad, New Mexico.

He said there were no distress calls to the airport's control tower from the pilot before he hit the wire.

FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford said the aircraft dropped off radar around 7:30 p.m.

The crash knocked the station off the air and cut power to the surrounding neighborhood. KCBD personnel were told to evacuate their building, but the station was back on the air Thursday, broadcasting from a studio provided by the Lubbock school district.