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Hawaii traffic-related fatalities up compared to last year

In approximately the first five months of this year, the state of Hawaii tallied 36 traffic-related fatalities, five more than the same time period last year.

Of the 36 fatalities the state has counted from Jan. 1 to Wednesday, 14 involved motor vehicle occupants, eight involved pedestrians, 13 involved motorcycles and scooters, and one involved a bicyclist.

The total was also eight more than the tally for the first four months of 2021, when there were 28 traffic-related fatalities.

Hawaii experienced an uptick in motorcycle-scooter-related accidents this year — 13 for the first five months of 2021 compared to eight during the same period of 2020.

In May, traffic fatalities involved a pedestrian struck by a car, a collision between a truck and motorcycle, and a collision between a motorcycle and sedan.

On May 3, Honolulu police said a 66-year-old, male pedestrian was struck by a 33-year-old man driving a vehicle westbound on Farrington Highway near Alapaki Street in Waianae. The pedestrian was crossing the highway outside of crosswalk.

He was taken to an area hospital in critical condition, where he later succumbed to his injuries, police said.

According to police, on May 16, an 18-year-old woman driving a Nissan pickup truck on Halona Road in Waianae experienced mechanical problems and veered into an oncoming lane, striking a 34-year-old male motorcyclist. The motorcyclist was wearing a helmet, but was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said speed appeared to be a factor for both vehicles.

On May 17, a male motorcyclist on Hakimo Road in Nanakuli tried to overtake two vehicles and ended up striking one that was making a left turn onto Kuualoha Road.

The motorcycle rider was ejected onto the roadway, and pronounced dead on the scene. He was Oahu’s 21st traffic-related fatality.

The majority of traffic-related fatalities, 21, took place on Oahu, while 11 took place on Hawaii County, and four on Maui County. Kauai County had no traffic-related fatalities.

Separately, a pedestrian fatality report by the Governors Highway Safety Association counted 20 pedestrian fatalities in Hawaii in 2020 compared to 27 in 2019, representing a 46% drop, based on preliminary data.

Hawaii was one of 20 states across the U.S. that recorded a decrease in pedestrian fatalities, while 27 states experienced an increase, and three experienced no change.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving, MADD Hawaii, today urged everyone to designate a non-drinking driver if alcohol is part of their Memorial Day weekend plans.

The Honolulu Police Department will continue unannounced, impaired driver checkpoints through June 30, including Memorial Day and King Kamehameha Day.

HPD reminds the public not to drink and drive, and that the legal drinking age is 21. Promoting intoxicating liquor to a person under the age of 21 is considered a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison.

TRAFFIC-RELATED DEATHS IN HAWAII

JAN. 1 to May 26, 2021

>> State: 14 motor vehicle occupants, 8 pedestrians, 13 motorcycles and scooters, 1 bicyclist (36 total)

>> City and County of Honolulu: 5 motor vehicle occupants, 7 pedestrians, 8 motorcycles and scooters, 1 bicyclist (21 total)

>> Hawaii County: 7 motor vehicle occupants, 1 pedestrian, 3 motorcycles (11 total)

>> Maui County: 2 motor vehicle occupants, 2 motorcycles (4 total)

>> Kauai County: 0

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