Vava’u fatal crash victims names released

Tonga police have released the names of three young men who died in a road accident in Vava’u last Saturday.

The victims are 24 year- old Ulaea To’i Moana Folau of Leimatu’a, 20 year-old ‘Anitelu Katoa of Leimatu’a and 17 year-old Kasete Latu of Hunga/Makave.

The 26 year old driver and eight other passengers from Leimatu’a aged between 19 to 26 years-old sustained injuries to their bodies.

Police said the group was travelling in a double-cap van on their way back to Neiafu from Ī ‘o Mata’aho, a historical side where they were drinking alcohol when the driver lost control of the vehicle at an area where the road is very steep.

This latest fatal death brings the total number of deaths on the road this year to 4, compared to 18 last year.

“While the full circumstances of the crash are yet to be determined, alcohol and speed are being considered in this case. I can say that all too often Police are attending serious crashes that are avoidable,” said Commissioner Stephen Caldwell.

“So many families have been dealing with the grief of losing their loved ones on our roads, and that’s incredibly sad. We extend our sympathy to the families of those involved and our thoughts are with their loved ones at this tragic time.”

“Crashes like this are preventable and we all need to do our part to reduce deaths and injuries on our roads,” Caldwell said.

Police are continuing their investigations into the crash.


Photo supplied