Waikoloa woman killed in head-on collision 09-07-04

PHONE: 961-2332


A woman died Monday (September 6, 2004) of injuries she suffered in a two-vehicle collision on Waikoloa Road about three-tenths of a mile east of the nine-mile marker in Waikoloa, South Kohala.

The victim was identified as Deborah Tilfas, 31, of Waikoloa. Tilfas was a front-seat passenger in a 2005 Chevrolet passenger van traveling west on Waikoloa Road.

Responding to a 1:30 p.m. call, South Kohala patrol officers determined that the van, driven by her husband, Peter Tilfas, 37, of Waikoloa, was struck head on by a 2004 Dodge passenger van driven in the opposite direction by James Munar, 35, of Ewa Beach, Oahu.

Deborah Tilfas was taken to the Kona community Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 3:20 p.m. Munar was taken to the North Hawaii Community Hospital, where he was treated for injuries and released. Peter Tilfas and daughters Mary, 11, and Bedra, 8, and son Keone, 5, were transported to the North Hawaii Community Hospital. Keone and Bedra Tilfas were later flown to Kapiolani Medical Center in Honolulu in serious condition.

The collision sparked a brush fire that consumed more than 200 acres on the north side of Waikoloa Road.

Police have not yet determined if speed or alcohol were factors in the crash and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers have initiated a negligent homicide and four negligent injury investigations into the crash. They are asking anyone with information about the traffic collision to call Officer Eric Cerezo of the TEU at 961-2332.

Monday’s death was the 29th traffic fatality on the Big Island so far this year, compared to 20 for the same time last year.

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