Police arrested nearly 1,100 drivers for DUI in 2018

KAILUA-KONA — Some 1,095 motorists were arrested for driving under the influence of an intoxicant on Hawaii Island’s roadways during 2018.

That’s according to the Hawaii Police Department, which released the year-end tally on Monday. The number is down 5.6 percent from 2017 when officers nabbed 1,160 drivers.


Officers in the department’s Kona district, which comprises the physical areas of North and South Kona, arrested 466 motorists while South Hilo officers arrested 279 and Puna officers 219, according to police. Some 85 motorists were nabbed by officers in South Kohala, 23 by officers in Ka‘u, nine by officers in Hamakua and four by officers in North Hilo.

Through the end of 2018, there were 1,137 major accidents compared with 1,366 in 2017, a decrease of 16.8 percent.

Of those arrested, 163 were involved in traffic crashes during 2018, down from 220 in 2017. The island also saw a decrease in arrests for driving under the influence of an intoxicant under the age of 21, with 54 arrests in 2018, down from 72 in 2017.


Though decreases were reported in the number of DUI arrests and crashes, the island’s for a second year saw 32 people killed on it’s public roads. In 2018, there were 30 fatal crashes on Hawaii Island (two of which had multiple deaths), resulting in 32 fatalities, compared with 30 fatal crashes (one of which had multiple deaths) resulting in 32 fatalities in 2017.

Impairment was a factor in 19 fatalities in 2018, police said. Of those, seven involved drugs only, and 12 involved both alcohol and drugs. Police cautioned, however, that those numbers may increase due to pending toxicology reports.

  1. Pest Outwest January 7, 2019 8:31 pm Reply

    So, that’s like a half percent of the population, and if you account for kids and others not driving around, maybe something like one in a hundred of us were out driving drunk . . . and got caught. How many didn’t get caught? Ten times that many? Easy? I mean, what are the odds? First you have to be driving over the limit in the same stretch of roadway with the cop, and second, you have to be weaving around or otherwise acting in a manner where the cop feels inclined to pull you over.

    Of course, you have to count tourists, who are a partying lot, so maybe 5 – 10% of the drivers on this island are out there cruising around over the limit. Which illustrates two things. First, it pays to assume every other driver on the road is trying to kill you at all times. And second, how insane it is for marijuana to be illegal, while dangerous and harmful intoxicating solvents are available for sale in every grocery store on the island. Ah well, as our previous mayor was wont to say . . . let’s have shots!

  2. Michael M January 8, 2019 6:57 am Reply

    Way too many! And these are the only ones getting caught. Stop the tiny fines and use mandatory jail time or community service cleaning up after the homeless. Ridiculous how easy these people get off.

  3. Buds4All January 8, 2019 7:37 am Reply

    Kim should be promoting Uber /Lyft not trying to trash it. They make our Island safer and @ a reasonable cost.

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