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Driver dies after crashing into utility pole on Big Isle

Big Island police believe speed, inattention and alcohol were factors when a man failed to make a turn on Mamalahoa Road in South Kona early Sunday morning and was killed when he was ejected from his car after it hit a utility pole.

The accident occurred at 2:36 a.m. Sunday just south of the 114-mile marker near Honalo when the driver of a 2013 Subaru station wagon failed to negotiate a turn in the roadway. The vehicle then ran off the mauka shoulder of the roadway and collided with a utility pole. The driver was ejected from the vehicle, and was taken in critical condition to Kona Community Hospital, where he died.

An autopsy has been ordered to determine the cause of death.

Police have initiated a coroner’s inquest investigation and are asking for anyone who may have witnessed the crash to call Officer Justin Hooser at 326-4646, ext. 229. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300.

This is the Big Island’s 22nd traffic fatality this year compared with 15 at this time last year.

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