Crash on Kaumualiʿi Highway causes fatality Thursday

KOLOA — A crash involving two vehicles on Kaumuali‘i Highway between mile markers 5 and 6 in an area known as Knudsen Gap or Halfway Bridge, east of the Maluhia Road junction, on Thursday afternoon, resulted in a fatality.

According to a preliminary report, at approximately 4 p.m., a 2011 Toyota Tacoma, operated by a 31-year-old male from Lawa‘i, was traveling westbound when the vehicle veered onto the westbound shoulder.

The truck then crossed back over onto the westbound lane and subsequently onto the eastbound lane of the highway, where it struck an oncoming 2018 Nissan sedan operated by a 19-year-old male of Hanama‘ulu with three other occupants.

A 49-year-old female of Hanama‘ulu, who was a rear passenger in the Nissan sedan, suffered fatal injuries. Her name has not yet been released.

A 71-year-old male resident, a rear passenger of the Nissan sedan, suffered serious, life-threatening injuries, and was medevaced to Queen’s Medical Center on O‘ahu for further treatment.

The front passenger of the Nissan sedan, a 19-year-old female of Hanama‘ulu, suffered serious injuries, and was admitted to Wilcox Medical Center. The driver of the Nissan sedan was treated and released at Wilcox Medical Center.

The driver of the Toyota truck was admitted to Wilcox Medical Center with serious injuries.

A toxicology report is pending to determine if impairment was a factor in the collision. An investigation remains ongoing.

Anyone who may have witnessed the crash is asked to call officer Isaiah Sarsona of the Traffic Safety Section at 241-1618.

This is Kaua‘i’s seventh traffic fatality of 2020.

  1. Drone n’ Visor December 26, 2020 6:05 am Reply

    At 4pm might bright sun in the eyes impaired the driverʻs vision?

    Maybe one more thing to check at SAFETY CHECK time.

    Instead of 4 hour highway shut down, especially during to and from work hours, couldʻnt a flying drone camera with pin ooint accuracy and digital on screen feet and inches grid display, replace the 4 hour accident “boots on the ground” investigation? A software progtam would allow a more accurare, and better estimated speed and distance calculations, etc., factored into the computer investigation.

    The computer investigation could be hired out for expert evaluation by a full time computer software technician.

    4 hours waiting in line to go home with no alternative route? OUCH !

  2. douglas henry December 26, 2020 9:25 am Reply

    We need a divided highway

  3. Citizen Cane December 26, 2020 11:12 am Reply

    How many deaths will it take before our highways are dragged kicking and screaming into the twenty-first century where they belong: with two lane divided thoroughfares, guardrails, and proper turning lanes or feeder roads at places like the Humane Society and Maluhia Road? With cane ag defunct there’s no excuse for not widening all but a few miles of our highways. Also way past time to build an alternate route to town from the south shore.

  4. Citizen Cane December 26, 2020 11:26 am Reply

    …There must be a work-around Chief Raybuck can figure out to shorten the time it takes for KPD to process and clear an accident site. While our sympathies and compassion are with the victims of these terrible accidents, and the first responders who work hard to assist and process them, totally cutting off in and out-bound access (including for unrelated emergency traffic) for entire portions of the island for several hours at a time is untenable.

    1. Nebbie Star December 27, 2020 11:29 am Reply

      I’m pretty sure they have to fly the investigator over from Oahu for fatal crashes. There’s no one on island qualified to do it.

  5. schar freeman December 26, 2020 5:16 pm Reply

    It is my understanding that sometimes professionals to conduct the investigation have to be flown here from Oahu. All these complaints are selfish IMHO,

  6. Kipu Tunnel December 27, 2020 6:58 pm Reply

    Kipu Tunnel lives…!

  7. Jennie December 28, 2020 12:27 pm Reply

    Most of us that live here love the laid back, country style of living, that is why we are still here.
    You can go ahead & put in all the high speed roadways you want & turn this island into a mini LA but I think it would be better if you just slow down & stop drinking & driving. Its not the roads that kill, its people!

    1. Citizen Cane December 28, 2020 4:38 pm Reply

      By your logic we should’ve kept the old horse-and-buggy lanes. You can have laid back and folksy and still improve highway safety. The issue is we need akamai leadership with the political will to control growth by means other than hoping that inefficient and deadly highways will influence people to stay away, and developers will be dissuaded (fat chance that last one!). —For the record I don’t drink, and I am a conservative driver with a 50 yr. no-accident record…most of that here on this island.

  8. jax December 28, 2020 5:26 pm Reply

    I agree. Everyone is in such high speed anymore. Electronics have sped up the thought process and drugs, alcohol, caffeine is added to the mix and disasters. Electronics are bad too. Kauai is an island, it was never intended to be a rush rush life. It will become hell in the handbasket like the other islands, if we just let nature take its course. Unfortunately, there should begin to have limits on population including tourists to maintain the Hawaiian flavor.

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