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Hilo fatality 08-31-07 (posted 09-04-07)

Hawaii Police Department
Traffic Enforcement Unit
Sergeant Christopher D. Gali
Phone: 961-2332
August 31, 2007
Report No. C07028249

Media Release

A 57-year-old Puna man died Friday (August 31) from injuries he sustained in a one-vehicle crash on Hawaii Belt Road (Route 19) and the Old Mamalahoa Highway in the Papaikou area north of Hilo.

The driver was identified as Eldon G. Elders Jr. of a Pahoa address.

Responding to a 7:51 p.m. call, South Hilo patrol and Traffic Enforcement Unit officers determined that the driver was traveling south on Hawaii Belt Road in a pickup truck when he ran off the right side of the road and struck a cement column that supports the stairs of the old pedestrian overpass.

The victim was transported to Hilo Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 8:46 p.m.

It is unknown at this time if speed, alcohol or drugs were involved.  The driver was not wearing a seatbelt.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers have initiated a coroner’s inquest case and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Police ask anyone who may have witnessed the crash to call Officer Robert Pauole at 961-8119.

This is the 25th traffic fatality on the Big Island this year compared with 25 at this time last year.