Big Island police say speed, wet roads factors in fatal traffic collision in Hilo

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Hawaii County Police Department Big Island police cars

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Big Island police reported that a 39-year-old man died after he was struck by a vehicle in Hilo on Monday, Oct. 18.

According to police, the man was identified as William Townsend of Hilo. The traffic collision happened shortly before 6:30 p.m. Monday in the area of Saddle Road and Kaumana Drive.

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Police said a 2014 Honda Grom motorcycle was going downhill in the eastbound direction on Kaumana Drive — which was reported to be wet. The motorcyclist then crossed the eastbound lane and went into the westbound gravel shoulder on Kaumana Drive, causing him to lose control and fall at the Saddle Road intersection.

A 2020 Kia Sedan going west on Saddle Road swerved left to avoid hitting the motorcycle in its lane, but instead hit the fallen motorcyclist, police said. At the time of the incident, it was raining, the roadways were wet and the area was dark.

Big Island police are investigating the collision and determined wet roads and speed as factors, but have not yet determined if alcohol or drugs are also factors. The motorcyclist apparently did not have a helmet at the time of the incident.

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If anyone witnessed the incident or has any information, police urge people to contact Officer Blayne Matsui at (808) 961-2339 or via email Those who prefer to remain anonymous can contact CrimeStoppers at (808) 961-8300.

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