HAWAII COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT UNIT
SERGEANT SAMUEL V. JELSMA
A 54-year-old male visitor from Alaska died Thursday afternoon (October 31, 2002) after his motorcycle ran off the road and into a lava field on the Hawaii Belt Road (Route 190) in the Kaupulehu area of the Kona District.
The name of the victim is being withheld until notification of his next of kin.
Responding to a 12:56 p.m. call Thursday, police determined that the victim was riding a rented 2001 Harley Davidson motorcycle south on Hawaii Belt Road near the 26-mile marker when he ran off the right shoulder of the road and into a lava field and was ejected from the bike.
The victim was taken to the Kona Community Hospital, where he died as a result of injuries he sustained in the accident. He was pronounced dead at 2:09 p.m.
Traffic Enforcement Unit officers are continuing an investigation into the crash and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death. The victim had not been wearing a helmet and received head injuries in the accident.
Thursday’s death was the 22nd traffic-related fatality on the Big Island so far this year, compared to 23 at the same time last year.
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