Hawaiʻi Police Department
Area II Operations
Assistant Chief Paul Kealoha
Phone: 326-4646, Ext. 246
A tanker truck crashed in South Kohala on Friday (November 15), killing the driver and spilling thousands of gallons of fuel.
Shortly after 2 p.m., South Kohala police responded to a traffic crash and determined that a tanker carrying approximately 8,400 gallons of diesel fuel was traveling in the makai direction on Kawaihae Road when it ran off the road and overturned between the 63- and 64-mile markers, spilling nearly half its load.
The driver was pinned inside the vehicle and died at the scene. His name is being withheld pending positive identification and notification of his family.
Kawaihae Road is closed in both directions and is expected to remain closed for several hours. Police Department personnel and Fire Department hazardous materials personnel are on the scene, as is a replacement tanker to transfer the remaining fuel.
Motorists are advised to use Waikoloa Road or Kohala Mountain Road until further notice.