HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT UNIT
SERGEANT SAMUEL V. JELSMA
MARCH 2, 2001
A Kona man died early Friday (March 2, 2001) after his motorcycle collided with a multi-purpose vehicle at the intersection of Kuakini Highway and Lako Street in Kailua-Kona.
The victim was identified as Joseph I. Kaipo, 36, of a Kailua-Kona address.
Responding to a 12:20 a.m. call, Kona patrol officer determined that the victim was riding a 1988 Kawasaki motorcycle heading south on Kuakini when he collided with the rear of a 1989 Nissan Pathfinder which had been traveling north on the highway and was making a left turn onto Lako Street.
The impact of the crash broke the motorcycle’s handlebars and threw the victim from the bike. After the impact, both the victim and his motorcycle struck a 1987 Jeep Grand Wagoneer that had also been in the left turn lane of the highway but had moved to the outside lane in an attempt to avoid the collision.
The victim was taken to the Kona Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 2 a.m. He had not been wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.
The driver of the Nissan Pathfinder, Miranda Coronel, 37, of Kailua-Kona, was not injured in the accident. The driver of the Jeep Wagoneer, Joseph Palacat, 46, and his five female passengers, Vivian Palacat, 76, Jammie Palacat, 38, Jozel Palacat, 3, and Jeniz and Jozan Palacat, both 9, also escaped injury. All are from Kailua-Kona.
Traffic Enforcement Unit officers are continuing an investigation of the accident and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death. Speed is believed to have been a factor in the accident, which occurred in an area zoned for 35 miles an hour. Toxicology results to determine alcohol or drug use are pending.
Friday’s death was the first traffic fatality of the year, compared to six at the same time last year.
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