In the early morning hours of Sunday June 12th, within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, a single vehicle accident on Highway 11 near milepost 35 claimed the life of 20-year old Bryson Areola from Kea‘au, Hawaii. Another occupant in the vehicle, 19-year old Julien Quiocho from Hilo, Hawaii was flown to Queen’s Medical Center on Oahu in critical condition with head and spinal injuries.
National Park Service rangers believe the accident happened at approximately 1:30 a.m. when the driver lost control and crashed into the lava field. It is believed that speed and alcohol may have contributed to the accident and an investigation is underway. Anyone who may have witnessed this accident or who may have information pertaining to this incident is asked to contact Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park at (808) 985-6001.
Chief Ranger Talmadge Magno would like to thank Hawai‘i County Fire and Police personnel for their assistance in the medical treatment of the victims and investigation of the accident.