A 34-year-old Kailua-Kona man died following an accident on Thursday on Manawalea Street in Kailua-Kona.
He has been identified as Nicholas Ashton Catlett.
Responding to a 9:58 a.m. call, Hawai`i Police Department officers determined that a 55-year-old Kailua-Kona woman was operating a maroon 2003 Mazda B2300 pickup truck with a high-top camper shell while she was transporting a mattress on the camper shell roof with the 34-year-old male standing on the rear bumper and holding on to the mattress. The mattress was tied onto the camper shell. While transporting the mattress up the street, the 34-year-old male lost his grip and fell onto the roadway striking his head.
He was transported to the Kona Community Hospital for treatment and was initially listed in critical condition. The 34-year-old male later died from his injuries that he had sustained in the fall and was pronounced dead at 10:04 a.m.
Police do not believe that speed is a factor in the accident.
An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.
The Area II Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a Negligent Homicide investigation and is asking for anyone who may have witnessed the collision to contact Officer Kimo Keliipaakaua at 326-4646, ext. 229. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo.
This is the 19th traffic fatality this year compared to 27 at this time last year.