NTSB: Plane Broke Apart In Midair Before Crashing Near Antlers

Tuesday, October 24th 2006, 1:17 pm
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A preliminary report says a plane that crashed near Antlers last week and killed four people disintegrated in midair.

The report from the National Transportation Safety Board says the plane broke apart while trying to reach a cruising altitude of about 23,100 feet. Radar indicates the plane made a 180-degree turn while descending at 13,500 feet per minute.

The crash near the Antlers airport killed Albert Radko and Perry Price of Oklahoma City, pilot Charles Howard of Houston and his son-in-law -- co-pilot Jon Olsen of Hitchcock, Texas.

The four left Wiley Post Airport in Oklahoma City about 30 minutes before the crash and were heading to Orlando, Florida, for an aviation convention.

NTSB investigator Tim LeBaron says the plane exceeded it's design limits and the question now is "why?"

LeBaron says it could take six months to a year to complete the investigation.