Wreckage from the accident was taken to Glenn's Towing in Waialua today. The front of the car is toward the right of the photo.

Haleiwa crash kills 5

They had been at a birthday
gathering on the beach, mom says

By Nelson Daranciang

Five people died this morning in Haleiwa after their car slammed into a palm tree as they were returning from a birthday gathering at Shark's Cove.

Police said speeding and alcohol may have been factors in the fatal accident.

The five victims were all male and North Shore residents. Their ages were 13, 17, 21, 22 and 37.

Elizabeth Askew, of Waialua, mother of two of the victims, witnessed the accident. Her sons, Patrick, 21, and Kaimana, 13, died at the scene.

Askew said the group was returning from a midnight gathering at the beach park in observance of Patrick turning 21 yesterday.

Askew said the victims, who went to the park to look at the ocean, were drinking but they were not drunk.

Askew said she and her daughter were in one car while the victims were in a four-door Honda sedan behind them. The accident occurred when the Honda was passing a car that passed the Honda moments earlier.

Askew said she saw brake lights and "a puff of smoke" in front, and then came upon the mangled car.

Police said the one-car crash happened about 1:30 a.m. on Kamehameha Highway between Kawailoa Drive and the Joseph P. Leong Highway bypass. All five occupants of the vehicle died upon impact and were pronounced dead at the scene, said Maj. Stephen Kornegay, Honolulu Police Department Wahiawa District Commander.

The car went out of control, veered to the left and crashed into a palm tree on the mauka shoulder of the highway, he said.

Two of the passengers were thrown from the vehicle, Kornegay said. The other three were pinned in the wreck. Firefighters were called to free the three victims from the twisted wreckage.

Kornegay said the sedan nearly broke in half from the impact of the crash.

Police closed Kamehameha Highway in the area for investigation. Traffic in both directions was diverted to nearby roads until about 6:30 a.m. when one lane was opened for contraflow. The highway was reopened by 7:30 a.m.

Friends and family remembered the victims today at the scene of the accident on Kamehameha Highway near Kawailoa Drive.

E-mail to City Desk


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