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SUV crashes head-on with Hele-On bus sending 15 to hospital

View Highway 19 (30 mile marker) in a larger map

By Hawaii 24/7 Staff

Fire/rescue crews responded to a 3:53 p.m. alarm Wednesday (Dec 19) to the 30 mile marker of Highway 19 in Ookala for a head-on collision between an SUV and Hele-On bus.

The male driver of the SUV was pinned in the vehicle. Firefighters used the Jaws of Life to extract the driver who was then transported to the hospital in critical condition.

Fourteen people in the Hele-On bus had minor injuries with all patients being transported to both North Hawaii Community Hospital and Hilo Medical Center via ambulance.

Traffic was re-routed through Ookala town as the highway was closed due to the crash. Police announced the highway open at 7:22 p.m.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

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