A 37-year-old Kailua-Kona woman died following a three-vehicle collision Tuesday on Queen Kaahumanu Highway, near Kaupulehu Drive in North Kona.
The victim was identified Wednesday morning as Megan Valerie Meyers.
Responding to an 11:06 a.m. call, police determined that Meyers was operating a white 2017 Subaru S.U.V. traveling north when it crossed over the yellow centerline and hit a white 2018 Peterbuilt semi-truck with a trailer head-on near mile marker 86, according to the Hawaii Police Department. Subaru was then struck on the passenger side by a northbound white 2008 Toyota Highlander SUV.
Meyers, who police initially said was unresponsive, was later transported to Kona Community Hospital where she was pronounced dead at 5:05 p.m.
The 39-year-old man driving the Peterbuilt semi-truck and the 62-year-old man driving of the Toyota Highlander were not seriously injured in the crash.
An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.
The road was closed for nearly eight hours after the wreck.
According to police spokesperson Denise Laitinen, the semi-truck was carrying 20 tons of asphalt, which had to be removed. Also there was a 100 yard debris field of diesel and gasoline that had to be cleared by the Department of Transportation and HAZMAT crews. This added to the delay in opening the highway.
The Area II Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a coroner’s inquest investigation and is asking for anyone who may have witnessed the collision to contact Officer Jason Foxworthy at (808) 326-4646, ext. 229, or email at email@example.com.
This is the ninth traffic fatality this year compared to eight at this time last year.