Kona traffic death reclassified 08-25-03

PHONE: 961-2332
AUGUST 25, 2003


The death of a 61-year-old man on July 24, 2003, after he was struck by a loose tire has been reclassified to a non-traffic fatality.

The death of the victim, identified as Clifford Vierra, of a Captain Cook address, was reclassified from a traffic to a non-traffic fatality because the accident occurred on a private road.

Police determined that Vierra was conducting an inspection on Laaloa Avenue in the White Sands subdivision of when a tire came off the rear axle of the dumper-trailer of a 1987 Peterbuilt truck driven by Newton Kakahio, 42, of a Waikoloa address. Gaining momentum after breaking loose from the trailer, the tire stuck Vierra on the road, and then continued rolling west on Laaloa, damaging several mailboxes, a sign and a rock wall before coming to a stop.

Vierra was taken to the Kona Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The reclassification of Vierra’s death means there are now 19 traffic fatalities so far this year on the Big Island, compared to 18 at the same time last year.

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