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Thursday, June 8, 2000

Chinatown crash
kills 2, injures 2

A sedan going 90 mph on
King St. hits a fire hydrant, two
signal poles and a
building pillar

By Jaymes K. Song


Two men were killed and two others seriously injured in a one-car crash in Chinatown early today.

Witnesses told police the vehicle was traveling at 90 miles per hour. The speed limit in the area is 25 miles per hour.

The men were in a four-door Pontiac LeMans sedan. They appear to be in their mid-20s and have not been positively identified, said Honolulu police traffic investigators.

Two men were at Queen's Hospital this morning. One is reported in critical condition and the other in guarded condition, said a hospital official.

Witnesses reported the LeMans was headed east on North King Street when it lost control in a slight bend in the roadway and struck a fire hydrant on the makai side of Kekaulike Street near the Oahu Market at 1:39 a.m., said Sgt. John Agno of the traffic division.

The car then spun and struck two traffic-signal poles and a sign before slamming into a pillar of a building at 135 N. King St. The car came to rest on the sidewalk area, Agno said.

Three passengers, who were not wearing seat belts, were ejected from the car, police said.

Firefighters cut open the door and top of the car to extricate the driver, who was found in the back seat also not wearing his seat belt, fire officials said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Traffic investigators said alcohol is "definitely a factor" in the crash. At least one case of beer was discovered inside the car, with cans scattered around the crash. Some of the cans appeared to have been consumed, police said.

Police closed off King Street for several hours while investigators examined the scene.

The street was reopened before the morning rush hour.

The accident was Oahu's 26th and 27th traffic fatalities of the year compared to 18 at the same time last year.

E-mail to City Desk

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