Molokai Police come to aid of out-of-control vehicle, injuries avoided

December 29, 2010, 12:12 PM HST · Updated December 29, 12:52 PM
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By Wendy Osher.

Molokai police successfully intercepted a runaway vehicle that was traveling at speeds in excess of 70 miles per hour. The driver, Gaig Yap, made the initial 911 call at 9:54 a.m. on Saturday, December 18, 2010 saying he was unable to slow the vehicle down, according to Maui Police.

The 19-year-old Kualapuu man was driving a 1993 Honda Civic, and told dispatchers that he was unable to shift gears or effectively slow the car using the vehicles brakes or emergency brakes, said Maui police.

The runaway vehicle was traveling east on Maunaloa Highway near Kalamaula when responding Officer Stafford Caparida witnessed the vehicle pass him in the opposite direction.

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Maui Police say a second officer, Officer Kyle Bishaw-Juario, was able to maneuver his vehicle in front of the runaway car as both were traveling at speeds of 70-80 mph.

According to police reports, the officer allowed Yap’s vehicle to touch the bumper of the patrol car, and attempted to slow both vehicles by applying the brakes. Both cars continued for more than 100 yards before coming to a rest fronting the Paddlers’ Restaurant.

Out of concern for public safety, the supervisor on duty, Sergeant Randy Esperanza positioned his vehicle further ahead of Brishaw-Juario, and began alerting motorists and clearing the highway of traffic.

Captain Wallace Tom, the Molokai Patrol District Commander, noted that the vehicle was stopped before reaching the congested Maunaloa Highway and Alamalama Avenue intersection in Kaunakakai Town.

Both the officer and Yap escaped without injury. Maui Police say the out-of-control vehicle sustained a cracked front grill and scratches to the bumper, while the patrol vehicle sustained scratches to its rear bumper.

According to police records, the 911 call was received by Molokai Radio Telephone Operator Chris Neuhart, who handled the radio communications of the field officers.

(Supporting information provided by MPD).

MauiNOW file photo.

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