Car goes airborne leaving two dead

Keoni Limahai
Keoni Limahai
Capt. Letha DeCaires
Capt. Letha DeCaires

By Duane Shimogawa - bio | email

MAKAPUU (KHNL) - An early morning car crash in Windward Oahu leaves two young men dead.

The Honolulu Medical Examiner's office identifies the men as 20-year-old Benjamin Makekau and 19-year-old Ikaikakane Makekau.

Police say they were brothers and the driver, the elder Makekau, may have been racing another car, when he lost control around a curve near the Makapuu lighthouse on Kalanianaole Highway.

Investigators say the 20-year-old Makekau is from Waimanalo. His brother is from Kona. They were in the car that hit an embankment which launched them into the air.

The car then crashed upside down into an Oceanic Institute building after hitting a tree and a fence.

Waimanalo resident Keoni Limahai knows the dangers of this stretch of Kalanianaole Highway all too well.

"We have lots of accidents on this roadway right here, it's a pretty busy road," he said.

Police say the accident happened at around 2 a.m., Sunday. Both the driver and the passenger were not wearing seatbelts. Authorities say there's a good possibility speed may have contributed to this deadly crash.

Police say the car veered off the road and launched into the air, crashing into a building.

"At that point, the driver, a 19 year old and a 20 year old passenger appeared to have died in the collision at that time," Honolulu Police Department's spokeswoman captain Letha DeCaires said.

Limahai says this isn't the first time something like this has happened in this area.

"The one where they had the Gotcha Pro, had this one driver that had get into one accident, right in the same area and I think three of the people died in his car, he lived," he said.

Police blocked off traffic on Kalanianaole Highway from the Makapuu lighthouse to the pier following the accident until around 8:30 a.m., Sunday.

"I think actually if they widen the road, move, so that you would have more leeway if you get off the road, you could go off a little big, instead of going in the bushes or trees," Limahai said.

The combined estimated damage to both the building and the car is around three-thousand dollars.

But Limahai says the major damage of this crash will be felt by the families of those who died.

"I just sorry to hear, sorry about for them families, that they lost their loved ones, but you know, you just gotta drive safe man," he said.

Police are still investigating if drugs or alcohol were factors in this crash. If you have any information about this incident, call police.