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Kailua-Kona man dies after being struck by truck while cycling on highway

October 27, 2017 - 8:04am

KAILUA-KONA — A 61-year-old male cyclist is dead after a collision with a motorist on Queen Kaahumanu Highway at the intersection to Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keahole, Thursday afternoon. 

The crash was reported around 3:45 p.m. Hawaii Police Maj. Robert Wagner said the Kailua-Kona cyclist was traveling south when the collision occurred with the pickup truck driver, 41, of Kapaau, traveling north attempted to turn at the airport. 

Wagner said the 61-year-old crashed into the bed area of the pickup truck. 

The Kailua-Kona man was taken to Kona Community Hospital by ambulance in critical condition. It was later reported he died. 

The crash is under investigation. 

Traffic in the southbound lane was at a standstill as emergency vehicles responded to the incident Thursday. Hawaii Fire Battalion Chief William Bergin speculated the construction in the area had a lot to do with the collision. 

Along with that, response was difficult as there were two other critical calls that came in just prior to crash. Bergin said the Kailua-Kona ambulance responded to a residence in Makalei Estates to a patient coughing up blood, and the Keauhou station ambulance responded to a CPR call downtown at Alii Drive and Hualalai Road. 

Because of the additional calls, Bergin said, an ambulance from Captain Cook responded. It took about 15 minutes before it arrived. 

“It’s a good thing we didn’t have another incident because we would’ve had to bring the ambulance from South Kohala,” Bergin said. 

The Makalei fire station, which opened in 2013, was meant to fill the gap between Kailua-Kona and Waikoloa. It is 6 miles from the scene of the crash and it currently doesn’t house an ambulance. Bergin said every year the fire department asks for it, and every year it is part of the budget that’s cut. 

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