3 die on Big Island in separate crashes
Negligent-homicide investigations are opened in two of the fatal accidents
Three people were killed and several others were injured in separate traffic accidents across the Big Island since Friday, police said.
The accidents raised the number of traffic fatalities on the Big Island this year to 16, compared with 14 at the same time last year.
In the latest incident, a 24-year-old Hilo woman died in a three-vehicle crash that injured two other people. About 2:30 a.m., the woman, driving a Mazda SUV, was making a left turn from Post Office Road onto Route 130 in Pahoa when a speeding 1990 Honda sedan crashed into her, Big Island police said.
The woman, who was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown onto the roadway and struck by a 1995 Acura sedan driven by a 17-year-old Pahoa girl.
The woman was taken to the Hilo Medical Center and pronounced dead at 5:10 a.m. An autopsy will determine the exact cause of death, and police are withholding her name pending positive identification.
The driver of the Honda, a 19-year-old Pahoa man, was not wearing a seat belt. He was flown to the Queen's Medical Center in critical condition. Police arrested and released the man pending investigation of negligent homicide and driving under the influence of alcohol.
Another man, 30, riding in the Mazda was in stable condition at the Hilo Medical Center. The driver of the Acura was unharmed.
On Friday, a 49-year-old man died after his vehicle crashed head-on with a passenger van carrying eight Japanese tourists on the Big Island.
Police identified the man as Allen Yau Chuck Kahawaii of Volcano.
Kahawaii was driving a 1986 vehicle east on Hawaii Belt Road in Kiolokaa about 4:15 p.m. when he crossed the center line and collided with a 2003 Ford passenger van, police said.
Kahawaii was taken to Kau Hospital, where he died at 5:40 p.m.
Seven of the eight tourists were also taken to Kau Hospital, where they were treated and released for minor injuries.
A 30-year-old Hilo woman driving the van was treated for minor injuries and released from Hilo Medical Center.
Police said the wet roadway and speed appear to be factors.
Traffic officers have opened a negligent homicide investigation and ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.
Earlier Friday, a 24-year-old man died in a single-car accident in Kona. Police identified him yesterday as Thyres K. Simao of Waimea.
About 4:45 a.m., the man's 1995 Jeep Wrangler ran off the right side of Queen Kaahumanu Highway and overturned, police said.
He was alone in the Jeep and taken to Kona Community Hospital, where he died at 7:38 a.m., police said.