One dead, two injured after Makapu'u motorcycle crash

Police shutdown Kalanianaole Highway during investigation

 UPDATED 7:55 PM HST Jun 02, 2013
Makapu'u Motorcycle Collision
HONOLULU -

A moped rider is dead and the riders of a motorcycle sustained significant injury following a collision near the Makapu'u Lighthouse on Kalanianaole Highway Sunday.

The collision happened around noon in between the Hawaii Kai Golf Course and the Makapu'u Lighthouse.

Investigators believe that the rented moped was being operated by a male tourist when it crossed the center line after attempting to negotiate a right turn. That's when it collided with the motorcycle riders.

The male driver of the moped was pronounced dead at the scene.  

The driver of the motorcycle, a man in his mid  40's, was transported by Emergency Medical personnel in extremely critical condition. His female passenger, a woman in her early 40's, suffered serious injury. 

Investigators say knowing that several factors including the beautiful, gusty weather and the scenic drive  may have contributed to this crash.

"Usually on the weekend we see a lot more of the sport riders," said Lt. Bobby Towne of the Honolulu Police Department's Traffic Investigation division. "So it's not uncommon to have a lot more accidents on the weekend."

Police shutdown  Kalanianaole Highway for about 4 hours while they investigated the scene.

Police do not believe alcohol was a factor, but they think speed may have been. Mopeds are allowed on this part of the Highway but they say the rider may have been going too fast to handle moped.

"I think they try to take for granted that it's an easy vehicle to ride," Lt. Towne added. "But it's hard to ride if they haven't done it back home. It can be very tricky."

A couple of tourists visiting from New Zealand witnessed the crash from their red Mustang and helped the two motorcycle victims until EMS arrived.

They believe the motorcycle rider is in the military.

The moped rider represents the 31st traffic fatality on Oahu this year, with 24 recorded this time last year.

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