A 33-year-old Na‘alehu woman died in a single-vehicle collision on Mamalahoa Highway (Highway 11), south of the 84-mile marker in South Kona near Manuka State Park, during the early morning hours of Sunday, November 12, 2023.
Responding to a call at 2:06 a.m., police investigators determined that a silver 2011 Mazda CX-9 was traveling south on the highway when it ran off the right (makai) shoulder, went down a 20-foot embankment, rolled over, and caught on fire.
Responding Hawai‘i Fire Department personnel extinguished the blaze at which time a female body was located within the vehicle. The woman, who was the sole occupant of the vehicle, was transported to the Kona Community Hospital where she was later pronounced dead at 8:32 a.m.
Police believe that speed and impairment are factors in the crash. The driver was not wearing her seatbelt. She has not been positively identified, pending the notification of next of kin.
The Area II Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a coroner’s inquest investigation and is asking for anyone who may have witnessed the collision to contact Officer Dayson Taniguchi at (808) 326-4646, ext. 229, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at (808) 961-8300.
This is the 14th traffic fatality this year compared to 25 at this time last year.