WAILUKU - A 42-year-old man died at the scene of a single-motorcycle crash that was reported early Tuesday at Waiale and East Waiko roads in Wailuku, police said.
The motorcyclist was identified as Sean West of Makawao.
A preliminary investigation indicates West lost control of the 2011 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy motorcycle as he rode south on Waiale Road toward East Waiko Road, said Lt. Bobby Hill, commander of the police Traffic Section.
Police traffic investigator Dukie Racadio (center) inspects a 2011 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy motorcycle Tuesday morning after a fatal crash at Waiale and East Waiko roads in Wailuku. Employee Brian Nakao (left) and owner Pete MacDonald of ADP Towing had pushed the motorcycle from the area where it had landed near a pile of boulders behind the cement barrier.
The Maui News / LILA FUJIMOTO photo
A skid mark in the northbound lane of Waiale Road showed the path of the motorcycle as it went through the intersection and well off the roadway past a cement barrier before ending up near a pile of boulders.
The crash was reported at 5:02 a.m. When officers arrived at the scene shortly afterward, the motorcycle engine was cold, indicating the crash had occurred sometime earlier, Hill said. West was not wearing a helmet, police said.
Police are investigating speed and possibly alcohol as factors in the crash.
The traffic death was the 13th this year, compared with 10 at the same time last year. It was also the fourth motorcycle fatality this year.
Speed was a factor in all three of the earlier motorcycle crashes this year, Hill said, and alcohol is suspected as a factor in two of the earlier crashes.
"Motorcycles in and of themselves are inherently dangerous because you're on two wheels and require balance and coordination," Hill said. "It is best to take a course and make sure you're a proficient rider, maintain speed limits and do that without alcohol or drugs."
He said wearing a helmet, while not required by law for adults, could be a safety factor as well. Those under age 18 are required to wear helmets when operating or riding as a passenger on motorcycles.
While officers investigated the crash scene Tuesday morning, police closed East Waiko Road between Waiale Road and Honoapiilani Highway. The road was reopened at 8:12 a.m.