Three people were killed when their single-engine plane crashed 7 miles west of Deer Park in Stevens County.
Allen Kenitzer, FAA spokesman for the Northwest Mountain region, said in an email that a Cessna 172 aircraft crashed under unknown circumstances in a field near 5047 Bittrich-Antler Road. Kenitzer said the aircraft sustained substantial damage and the FAA and National Transportation and Safety Board will investigate the crash.
The plane belonged to Moody Aviation, according to the group’s Facebook page.
“It is with great sadness that Moody Aviation acknowledges there was a accident today involving one of its training aircraft,” it said on Facebook. “An instructor and two students perished in the event. Moody Aviation is cooperating with the National Transportation Safety Board. We are grateful for your prayers through this time.”
According to the Moody Bible College website, their Biblical Studies Campus closed at the end of the 2017-18 school year, but their aviation program is ongoing.
The program offers piloting, mechanical and maintenance training for students studying to be missionaries.
Deer Park Airport Manager Darold Schultz said the school uses its facilities about four days a week. He said almost every flight school in the area uses the Deer Park Airport for training, because it doesn’t have a radio tower for students to worry about, is equipped with long runways and has a crosswind runway.
Officials with the Federal Aviation Administration are on the scene of the crash conducting the initial investigation Friday afternoon and the National Transportation Safety Board is expected to arrive on scene Friday night.
The Stevens County medical examiner is also on the scene of the crash.