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Traffic deaths double this year on Hawaii island

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 1:59 a.m. HST, Nov 15, 2012

Hawaii County’s traffic fatalities have doubled so far this year over last year, the police department reported Wednesday as it pledged to continue drunken-driving roadblocks islandwide.

There have 36 traffic fatalities on Hawaii island, double the 18 in the same period last year. So far this year, 23 were linked to drugs (nine), alcohol (four) or both (10), the department said.

There have been 1,260 major accidents this year, compared with 1,199 during the same period last year, an increase of 5.1 percent, the department said.

 Police arrested 37 motorists for drunken driving in the week ending Sunday, six of them involved in traffic crashes. One was under the age of 21.

The department reported Wednesday that there have been 1,272 DUI arrests so far this year, compared with 1,273 during the same period last year. Kona saw the highest number of arrests, 14, making 510 so far this year. South Hilo had 10, for 488 so far this year.

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