View Mamalahoa Hwy (Hwy 19) – 9 Mile Marker in a larger map
A 54-year-old Pepeʻekeo man died Thursday (May 1) from injuries he sustained in a two-vehicle crash on Route 19 in the area of the 9-mile-marker in Pepeʻekeo.
Responding to a 1:54 p.m. call, South Hilo patrol officers determined that the 54-year-old man was operating a 1998 Toyota four-door sedan and traveling north on Route 19 when he crossed the centerline and sideswiped a 2013 Ford flatbed truck traveling south that was being operated by a 29-year-old Nāʻālehu man.
The driver of the Ford was not injured.
Fire Department rescue personnel took an 82-year-old woman, who was a passenger in the Toyota, to Hilo Medical Center. She did not receive any significant injuries but was being confined overnight as a precaution.
All occupants were wearing their seat belts.
The 54-year-old man was taken to Hilo Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 4:24 p.m.
It does not appear at this time that speed, alcohol or drugs were involved.
Traffic Enforcement Unit officers initiated a negligent homicide investigation and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.
The name of the victim is being withheld pending positive identification.
Police ask anyone with information about this crash to call Officer Keith Nacis at 961-8119.
This is the 5th traffic fatality on the Hawaiʻi Island this year compared with 12 at the same time last year.