A 53-year-old Keaau woman died Saturday following a two-car collision, Hawaii County’s first traffic death of the year.
Big Island police initiated a negligent homicide investigation and ordered an autopsy to determine the cause of death.
It does not appear that alcohol or drugs were involved, but speed was a factor in the crash, police said.
The woman was driving a 2001 Mercury, four-door sedan and traveling north on Route 130 when she crossed the center median and collided with a 1999 Mercedes Benz multi-purpose vehicle traveling south.
Fire rescue personnel took the driver of the Mercedes, a 56-year-old woman also from Keaau, and her 23-year-old daughter to Hilo Medical Center.
The driver of the Mercury was pronounced dead at 11:26 p.m. at Hilo Medical Center.
The collision occurred on Route 130, south of the Route 139 intersection in Keaau just before 8:30 p.m.
All occupants were wearing their seatbelts.
Anyone with information regarding this crash is asked to call officer Casey Cabral at 961-8889.
This is the first traffic fatality on the Big Island this year, compared with none at the same time last year.