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Hawaii tallies 92 traffic-related fatalities as year winds down

Traffic-related fatalities in Hawaii surpassed those of last year, but were not as high as in 2019, according to preliminary statistics from the state Department of Transportation.

Statewide, there were 92 traffic-related fatalities from the start of the year up to Wednesday — eight more than the same time period last year. The number does not include statistics from today.

To date, there have been nearly double the number of motorcycle-related fatalities and a few more pedestrian fatalities this year compared to last year.

Of the 92 fatalities from Jan. 1 to Wednesday, 31 involved motorcycles and scooters, 31 involved motor vehicle occupants, 25 involved pedestrians, four involved bicyclists, and one involved an ATV operator.

On Oahu, numerous traffic-related fatalities happened this month, including several that involved collisions between vehicles and motorcycles, mopeds and scooters.

There were also recent solo fatalities involving an electric bicycle and an electric unicycle.

On Monday afternoon, a Mililani woman, 53, died after falling off her electric bike while riding in the neighborhood, according to the Honolulu Police Department.

Police said the woman was riding her electric bike when she fell off and hit her head for an unknown reason. She was taken to Queen’s Medical Center in critical condition, where she later died from her injuries.

On Dec. 22, police reported a 40-year-old man died after being thrown from his electric unicycle and then struck by a Honda CRV near Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. The incident occurred at about 10:15 p.m. on the westbound lanes of the H-1 freeway, east of the airport off-ramp.

He was taken to Pali Momi Medical Center in critical condition, where he later died of his injuries.

Two recent collisions involving mopeds and motorcycles occurred in the past week and a half.

On Wednesday, a 33-year-old man on a moped died after crashing into an Isuzu commercial box truck in Wahiawa. He was taken to an area hospital and pronounced dead. He was not wearing a helmet at the time of the collision.

Last Wednesday, two days before Christmas, a 22-year-old female passenger on a Suzuki motorcycle died after it crashed into a Subaru station wagon in Kailua.

Police said a 22-year-old male was operating the motorcycle that struck the station wagon at the intersection of Kailua Road and Hamakua Drive.

He was taken to the hospital in serious condition. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Both were wearing helmets.

The Subaru driver, 40, and his female passenger, 72, were not injured and remained at the scene, police said.

In all of 2020, when the pandemic resulted in lockdowns and travel restrictions, there were 85 traffic-related fatalities. In 2019, there were 108 traffic-related fatalities, mostly involving motor vehicle occupants.

HPD said it will continue to set up impaired driver checkpoints at unannounced times and locations from Jan. 1 to Feb. 28 as part of ongoing efforts to reduce traffic injuries and deaths.

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

TRAFFIC-RELATED FATALITIES

Traffic-related deaths in Hawaii from Jan. 1 to Dec. 29:

>> State (92 total): 31 motor vehicles, 25 pedestrians, 31 motorcycles and scooters, 3 bicyclists, 1 ATV operator.

>> City and County of Honolulu (48 total): 9 motor vehicles, 19 pedestrians, 17 motorcycles and scooters, 3 bicyclists.

>> Hawaii County (26 total): 14 motor vehicles, 2 pedestrians, 9 motorcycles and scooters, 1 ATV operator.

>> Maui County (16 total): 7 motor vehicles, 4 pedestrians, 4 motorcycles and scooters, 1 bicyclist.

>> Kauai County (2 total): 1 motor vehicle; 1 motorcycle

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