Number Of Traffic Deaths Surpasses All Of 2005 - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Number Of Traffic Deaths Surpasses All Of 2005

Henry Shimata Henry Shimata
Joahl Mirafuentes Joahl Mirafuentes
The crash scene early Monday morning The crash scene early Monday morning

by: Minna Sugimoto 

(KHNL) - It's a number that keeps rising. A Waipahu woman is the 78th person killed on Oahu's roadways this year. That's already more than the total number of traffic deaths for 2005.

A wild ride ends with a car on its roof and another fatality for traffic investigators.

19-year-old Joahl Mirafuentes is the latest victim. The Waipahu High graduate was a passenger in the car.

"I couldn't, I couldn't believe, you know," Henry Shimata, victim's grandfather, said. "Sudden that's why, you know, it's hard to believe."

Witnesses told police the car was speeding and traveling erratically, before the driver lost control at a bend and crashed just before midnight.

Shimata says his granddaughter's boyfriend was at the wheel. He's in the hospital in critical condition.

"The mom just called and told me that he's in surgery now," Shimata said.

It's been a busy year for traffic investigators.

July 24: Two teens die when the car they're riding in goes airborne and slams into the bottom of a ditch at the end of Roosevelt Aveneue in Kalaeloa.

June 12: A father-to-be is killed when a tour bus veers across the center line of Kamehameha Highway in Kahaluu and crushes his SUV.

April 24: Four farmers die and eight others are injured when their pickup crashes into a cement truck.

Just a few of the tragedies.

With more than two months to go until the end of the year, we've already had more people die on Oahu's roadways than all of 2005 and all of 2004.

2006 to date: 78

2005 total: 75

2004 total: 70

Considering the holiday season isn't even upon us, police are very concerned.

"You can say one thing, but you know kids eh," Shimata said. "Spur of the moment, they going do even though you told em."

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