HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT UNIT
SERGEANT SAMUEL V. JELSMA
NOVEMBER 30, 2001
A 58-year-old Puna man died Friday afternoon (November 30, 2001) after a dump truck he was driving went out of control and overturned on Waikoloa Road near the seven-mile marker in South Kohala.
The victim was identified as Gordon Halsey, of a Mountain View address.
Responding to an 11:28 a.m. call, police officers determined that the victim was driving a 1973 Kenworth dump truck heading down Waikoloa Road when he lost control of the truck, which ran onto right shoulder of the road, struck a guardrail and then overturned off the right shoulder. The victim was ejected during the crash and sustained head and body injuries. He had not been wearing a seat belt.
Witnesses said that before the crash, the dump truck appeared to be out of control and had passed them at a high rate of speed before hitting the guardrail and overturning.
Rescue personnel transported the victim to the North Hawaii Community Hospital, where he later died of injuries he sustained in the crash. He was pronounced dead at 12:03 p.m.
The truck had been loaded with gravel at the time of the accident, and the road was closed for about three hours after the accident.
It was noted this was the exact same stretch of roadway that had claimed the life of another truck driver under similar circumstances earlier this year. In April 2001, Ernest Kinney Jr., 70, of Waimea, was killed after he lost control of his tractor-trailer, which collided with the same guardrail and overturned, ejecting him. He had been hauling sand at the time.
Traffic Enforcement Unit officers are continuing an investigation into the accident and have ordered an autopsy to determine exact cause of death.
Friday’s traffic fatality was the 26th so far this year on the Big Island, compared to 34 at the same time last year.
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