A 19-year-old Maui man was arrested on suspicion of first degree negligent homicide after the truck he was driving struck and killed a bicyclist along Kula Highway on Saturday.
According to according to Lt. William Hankins of Maui County Police Department’s Traffic Division, at approximately 3:10 p.m. Saturday, a 2017 Toyota Tacoma operated by the 19-year-old from Pukalani was traveling north on Kula Highway about four miles south of Kealakapu Road when it crossed into the opposite lane of traffic and collided with a bicyclist heading southbound.
In a release, Maui police said the bicyclist, identified as 64-year-old Haiku resident Henry Ritmeester, was ejected onto the roadway as a result of the collision and died at the scene.
The truck driver and his 18-year-old passenger from Hana were not injured in the crash. The driver was arrested about four hours later, according to MPD.
Police said although Ritmeester was wearing a helmet when he was struck, speed is suspected to be a factor in the crash. Neither the Toyota driver or his passenger were wearing seatbelts, but the truck’s air bags did not deploy.
An investigation into the involvement of drugs and/or alcohol in the crash continues.
This is the 13th traffic fatality for Maui County in 2021, compared to six at the same time last year.