HONOKAA, BIG ISLAND (HawaiiNewsNow) - Two women were killed and five people were hospitalized following a collision at about 4:30 p.m. on Monday on the Big Island. Police arrested a Honokaa man for negligent homicide.
Police said a van ended up in a gulch after being forced off the road by a pickup truck. Investigators said nine people were in the van that was traveling on Highway 19 between Honokaa and Paauilo. Horrified witnesses watched the deadly collision unfold.
"The red Nissan pickup truck was overtaking the van at the time when apparently the driver came back into the Hilo-bound lane and collided with the van, forcing the van off the road into a gulch," said Sgt. Christopher Gali of the Hawaii Police Department.
The van came to rest in some tall brush with its windshield completely gone. Two women inside were killed. Medics transported other passengers in the vehicle.
"We have reports that there were two critical people from the van. One was transported to the Hilo Medical Center and the other was transported to North Hawaii Community Hospital," said Gali.
Three other people were listed in serious condition, according to authorities.
The pickup truck also ended up in the gulch. Police arrested the driver, a 30-year-old Honokaa man.
"We have the driver of the Nissan pickup truck in custody. Right now he's arrested for two counts of negligent homicide and two counts of negligent injury," Gali said.
Police said there was a boy riding in the pickup truck. He was not hurt. The crash involved a total of 11 people.