Two killed, teen injured in H-1 Freeway crash

Lt. Robert Towne of HPD's traffic division
Lt. Robert Towne of HPD's traffic division
John Herzog, 27, was a passenger in the vehicle
John Herzog, 27, was a passenger in the vehicle

By Ben Gutierrez - bio | email and Ian Scheuring

KAPOLEI (HawaiiNewsNow) - A traffic accident involving a Dodge Ram pick-up truck on the H-1 freeway near the Makakilo off-ramp killed two adults and injured a teenager, according to police reports.

Authorities say the driver, a 21-year-old Waipahu woman, and one passenger, a 27-year-old Waianae man, were pronounced dead at the scene. Relatives identified the man as John Herzog. Another passenger, a 15-year-old Waipahu boy, was last reported in fair condition at the Queen's Medical Center.

The crash happened in the west-bound direction on the H-1 freeway just past the Kualakai Parkway (North-South Road) on-ramp at approximately 6:20 a.m.

"Witnesses said that a vehicle, a Dodge truck, passed them at a high rate of speed, for reasons unknown yet lost control, climbed the side of the embankment, then rolled over," said Lt. Robert Towne of HPD's traffic division.

Westbound traffic was diverted off the H-1 at the Kualakai Parkway off-ramp while police conducted their investigation. The freeway was reopened at around 10 a.m.

Though all three victims were in the cab of the truck, none of them were wearing seat belts, according to Towne, who also said that speed and alcohol may have been factors in the crash.

"The juvenile passenger actually climbed out on his own," said Towne. "As far as the removal of the two deceased, we did use the jaws of life to extricate them." According to Towne, the teenager has been talking to investigators.

The fatalities were the 19th and 20th on Oahu this year, compared with 16 traffic-related deaths at this time last year. Towne said the female driver was two days away from celebrating a birthday.

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